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:
Alignment with the purpose and goals of the Fund and the CRA mission and operating principles.
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.
Exhibits a clear narrative of the project will improve the quality of life and have a direct client impact in relation to the goals and action plan of Envision Cambridge and the Community Needs Assessment.
Provides a public need, or neighborhood amenity.
Alignment with and support of current Cambridge planning and development efforts (see CDD website).
Clear public accessibility.
Ability to inspire, or inform other community investments.
Applicant Related Scoring Criteria:
Capacity of the applicant to successfully implement the project.
Partnerships and programmatic connections to the proposed site.
Financial need of the applicant.
The CRA reserves the right to apply additional evaluation criteria before accepting projects.
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 2019 are currently being determined.
Application and Awarding of Funds
Submit the online application form and attachment
Forward Fund advisory group assesses proposals on a quarterly basis
Finalists meet with CRA staff
Applicants and awardees are notified
CRA Board approves recommended slate of awards on a quarterly basis
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
Grant applications can be submitted throughout 2019.
Submitted applications will be reviewed quarterly by the Forward Fund Selection Committee on:
June 21, 2019
September 27, 2019
December 13, 2019
Funding approvals will be announced shortly thereafter.
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.
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 the award being granted, 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