Benchmark Grants

Benchmark grants, distributed twice a year, help business districts meet key milestones to build strong, vibrant and financially stable business district associations. These small, semiannual grants (up to $4,250 each) are available in the Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter cycles. Grant funds must be matched with private investment (cash or in-kind goods and services). Funding is given to business districts applying for benchmarks not yet achieved.

Venture Portland’s Benchmark grants, distributed twice a year, provide tactical financial support to business districts. After establishing a baseline of activities, business districts define their own benchmarks and the appropriate roadmap to find success and long-term financial and programmatic stability and sustainability. Business districts implement year-over-year accomplishments until the benchmark is achieved. This moves business districts toward self-sustainability. Once a benchmark is achieved, business districts are free to focus on another area for strategic growth. Eligible projects must show quantifiable progress towards benchmark achievement and business district self-sustainability. The 6 benchmarks are as follows (*priority benchmarks):

Benchmark Grant Application, Guidelines and Resources