Green Cambridge Inc., Social Umbrella, 2015 Planning and Design Project

Green Cambridge Inc., Social Umbrella, 2015 Planning and Design Project


Project proposals will be evaluated and scored based on the following criteria by an advisory group to consist of a combination of CRA staff and City of Cambridge staff from various departments:

Project Related Scoring Criteria:

  1. Alignment with the purpose and goals of the Fund and the CRA mission and operating principles.
  2. Improvement to the quality of the built environment, the public realm, or a built structure that provides a public need, or neighborhood amenity.
  3. Provision of a tangible public-purpose investment, preferably in an under-resourced area of Cambridge designated by the City of Cambridge Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Areas.
  4. Alignment with and support of current Cambridge planning and development efforts (see CDD website).
  5. Clear public accessibility and visibility of the project.
  6. Ability to inspire, or inform other community investments.
  7. Alignment with the Forward Fund goals which promote inclusivecollaborative, and a resourceful process.

Applicant Related Scoring Criteria:

  1. Capacity of applicant to successfully implement the project.
  2. Partnerships and programmatic connections to the proposed site.
  3. Financial need of applicant.

The CRA reserves the right to apply additional evaluation criteria before accepting projects.

Just-A-Start Churchill Vestibule, 2016 Planning & Design Project

Just-A-Start Churchill Vestibule, 2016 Planning & Design Project

Governance Structure

A CRA staff member responsible for receiving applications and responding to questions regarding the application process will manage the Forward Fund on a day-to-day basis. An advisory group consisting of CRA and City of Cambridge staff from various departments and agencies (Community Development Department, Department of Public Works, Department of Human Services, Cambridge Housing Authority) will be appointed to evaluate proposals and determine program awardees. Advisory group members for 2018 are currently being determined.


Application and Awarding of Funds

Capital Grants (max $25,000)

  • Submit online application form and attachment
  • Forward Fund advisory group assesses proposals
  • Finalists meet with CRA staff
  • Applicants and awardees are notified
  • CRA Board approves recommended slate of awards
  • Awardees seek to obtain permits necessary for project implementation and submit finalized budget proposals
  • Provisional 50% awards are granted to awardees who have successfully obtained the necessary permits and documentation of matching funds and/or services
  • Final 50% of funds are granted after completion of the project
  • Outcome reporting by awardees within two months of completion date to Program Manager

Submission Deadline

Grant applications are due Tuesday, April 17, 2018.

Funding approvals announced by Wednesday, May 9, 2018.

Submission Format

Digital submissions using the online application are required. Please click the button below to start your application. Applications can be worked on and saved and then returned to later if necessary before submitting the final version. If you would like to see a preview of the questions on the form, click here for a PDF. Note that not all questions seen in the PDF are applicable to all grant types. Many questions found in the PDF form only need to be answered if you are applying for one of the two types of capital grants and do not need to be answered if you are applying for additional funds ($5,000 max) to complete a previously awarded project.

Agassiz Baldwin Community Center Fort Agassiz, 2017 Infrastructure Project

Agassiz Baldwin Community Center Fort Agassiz, 2017 Infrastructure Project


As the CRA seeks to continuously improve and expand our program offerings, we hope to understand and document our impact in the Cambridge community.

  • Awardees need to document the impact of the final project with any combination of photos, a 1-2 page written narrative, a video, or other creative mediums.
  • Within one year to the date of award being granted or May 9, 2019, awardees are asked to submit these materials regarding their project’s impact for the community.
  • Quantitative data is encouraged if relevant and available (i.e.: number of people visiting the site, number of people attending an event, associated matching or fundraising, economic impact, etc).


The Cambridge Redevelopment Authority reserves the right to terminate the distribution of awards if it is determined that the funds are not, without prior notification and approval, being used for the purpose approved through the project application.


Please see our FAQ page. All interested parties with questions not answered there are encouraged to contact the CRA. 

Contact:           Carlos Peralta, Program Manager


Telephone:        617-492-6800 x14