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  • Do I need to answer all the questions in Attachments B and C of the brief?
    The short answer is No, you do not need to respond to the questions in Attachments B and C. Since there are so many project types and conditions, we hoped to provide this list as a way to get applicants to think of potential hurdles to implementing or maintaining the projects. The questions are meant to respond to some common considerations such as number of volunteers, permits/approvals for projects, or timelines. The responses to questions however may impact project timeline, budget, implementation strategies, programming, or how the community gets involved, which should be included in your presentation slides. Please contact us if you have additional questions.
  • How detailed should our budget be?
    While there is no template for the budget, we ask that applicants consider the types/categories for improvements (i.e. Landscape Elements, Art, Site Furniture, Equipment Rental, etc.) and the various elements that fall under those categories to estimate budget. When you have firm cost, we recommend adding an additional 5-10% of cost as there will likely be additional items you forget about (see the example below). If you are estimating, we recommend looking into general cost per square foot costs for a project (i.e. murals have a range of cost per square foot of $15-$50, pending site conditions, artists fee, materials, etc). At the end of the day, it's about putting a reasonable cost to an item. For instance, if you are painting a mural on a wall that measure 10 ft. x 20 ft. budgeting $500 is not a reasonable value as materials (paint, brushes, rollers, etc.) will likely exceed that budget for that size of a wall, and that doesn't include a fee to an artist to paint. However $5,000 may be a more reasonable cost (assuming 200 sq. ft. at $25 per sq. ft.). If you still aren't sure of what to budget or a cost, contact us! An Example: Our proposal include 4 new large planters. Total cost includes: - Planters ($225 each x 4) = $900 - Gravel for Drainage (6 bags of gravel at $5 per bag) = $30 - 1 cu. yd. of soil + delivery = $150.00 - Mulch (2 bags of mulch at $4 per bag) = $8 - Assorted plants = $200.00 Estimated cost of planters = $1,288 Budgeted cost of planters (+10% of estimated cost) = $1,417.00 Beyond market changes, some examples of items you may not remember to add in: delivery costs, sales tax, miscellaneous hardware, equipment rental costs, permit costs.
  • Our team is considering 2 phases for our project supported by external resources. Should we show the full project or just what the grant will cover?
    Yes, you should show your full proposal and explicitly visualize and state what improvements belong to what phase. If phase 2 of the project is also supported by other funding sources, this information should also be clearly noted in your proposal and budget.
  • Do you have any recommendations (software or other resources) we should consider if we want our application to look as professional as possible?
    The representation for each proposal will vary depending on what your proposed idea is. One effective method for showing an idea is sketching over a photo. This can work for both plans or 3D representation and creatively spotlight the types of activities or impact of adding a few design elements. A few examples are shown below but these are not the only methods for showing an idea. Sketchup models, hand sketches or drawings, drafted plans, or even collages also work. If you have more questions, feel free to contact us.
  • I am unable to get a letter of support from my area commission. What are my options?
    We understand with the project timeline that your team may not have been able to get your proposal approved for a letter from your area commission. There are other options that might be possible: - Consider getting a letter from your local civic association, block watch, or other resident-driven organizations to provide backing for the project. - Consider creating a "petition-style" support sheet that includes the project narrative, and opportunities for residents to sign their support for the project. - Consider getting a few letters of support - that could be from other organizations, residents near an impacted site, a local business, or a combination of the above.
  • Who should letters of support be addressed to?
    Applicants can address letters of support (community or property owner) to the "614 Beautiful Program."
  • I am looking to do something with infrastructure in the public right of way - who do I need to contact?
    We encourage you to consider improvements to public-infrastructure - something that can be seen in other neighborhoods throughout Columbus. This includes everything from installing a bike rack on a sidewalk to encourage an alternative form of transit, to wrapping utility boxes or poles with artwork, to creating a pop-up seating area along a curb. We recommend reaching out to the Department of Public Service first to see what is possible and required to make these changes. Email to understand what might be possible.
  • Can demolition costs be included in the proposal?
    If the demolition permits a beautification improvement, that may qualify for coverage under the grant. This could include removal of a broken fence to permit open access, de-paving a site to reestablish a green space in the community, or removal of dead plant material to allow a mural to be painted. Please note that the jury may opt to only cover a portion of the costs as part of their review.
  • What does the jury review?
    The jury will review all application submission materials you include: Application 15-page Slide Presentation (PowerPoint, Slides, Canva, etc.) Community letter(s) of support (minimum 1 required, but can be more than 1) (OPTIONAL) Property owner letter of support Please remember that your presentation is an opportunity to share your community's project idea and how you'll see it through. As the jury will be reviewing your slides, please make sure that your slides clearly convey your ideas, budget, partners, and plans in the slides themselves so the jury can get a clear picture of what you intend to do. If you'd like, connect with the program coordinator to review your presentation.
  • I missed an information session. Where can I find the recording?
    You can find the info session recordings by visiting the resources page of the program website (“Info Sessions” Button). Videos will be updated within 1-2 days of the session.
  • Do I need to attend all 3 information sessions?
    No, you do not need to attend all 3 information sessions. Each session will cover the same material but may vary with questions asked during the presentation. While you are not required to attend the virtual sessions when they happen, at least one member of your team should plan to watch one of the virtual sessions prior to submitting your application. Recordings of all sessions can be found on the resources page of the program website (“Info Sessions” Button).
  • How do I register for an information session?
    You can register for the information sessions by visiting one of the links below: Session #2: Session #3: / Please note that once a session has passed, you will no longer be able to register for the event. However, you can find recordings of all sessions by visiting the resources page of the program website (“Info Sessions” Button).
  • How do I submit a question?
    Contact us via the contact form on the website, or send questions to Lisa Snyder ( with the subject line of "614 Beautiful Program." Prefer to talk on the phone or in person, send an email to schedule an appointment, or call the Neighborhood Design Center office (614-221-5001) to set something up.
  • Is there a standard cost per square foot for murals?
    $10-$25 per square foot is a standard value to estimate murals, but please note that this value may exceed these limits depending on the muralist selected, special equipment needed to complete the project (i.e. scaffolding/lift), the complexity of the design, and/or other site conditions. Speaking with a muralist you wish to work with is the best way to ensure accurate pricing.
  • We need some advice on our project idea. Is the Neighborhood Design Center (NDC) able to assist us?
    Yes! We recommend contacting NDC to discuss your specific situation and see where they may be able to help. You can contact Lisa Snyder ( / (614)221-5001) to see how NDC may be able to assist your team.
  • My organization wants to apply. Does that count as a team?
    Yes, a single organization does qualify as a team. Teams also may include a group of residents, organizations partnering, or a combination of residents and an organization.
  • Are projects limited to a single site, or can we propose multiple sites?
    Projects are welcome to extend beyond a single site (see some of our Year 1 winners, Parsons Avenue Banners, Franklinton Farms Wayfinding & ID Signs, South Side Family Farms Signs), however there should be a benefit to the selection of the location. Applicants are also welcome to consider multi-faceted projects, for example, you could propose a series of neighborhood signs or gateway art into the community, but could also have it culminate in a community gathering space. We do not want to limit creativity - just make sure your ideas are adding to the beauty of your neighborhood, have community buy-in, and are all able to be completed in a 1-year cycle.
  • We are looking to do a dog park, is that an acceptable project proposal?
    Yes, but as maintenance and liability for these facilities may be higher than usual, your proposal will need to demonstrate responsiveness to these concerns. Additionally, while access to a site may be limited by daytime hours, the park should still be accessible to the general public. Additionally, your project must still demonstrate how the public is involved in the implementation of the project.
  • Would street art like electrical box wraps or street banners qualify?
    Yes, but you will need to take careful consideration of how the proposal engages the community as the implementation usually must be completed by a sign company. This may mean that the community proposes the theme of art, location, or even has an opportunity to vote on designs.
  • We're looking to install a rain garden as part of our project. Do you have any resources?
    Yes. Below are a few local resources. Additional PDF resources have also been added to the resource drive which can be found here. City of Columbus Utilities Blueprint Columbus Ecological Engineering Society
  • Do you anticipate this being an annual funding opportunity, or is it a one-time opportunity?
    At this time, the program is a pilot and will only have funding available for this grant cycle.
  • What is the spending period for the grant?
    The anticipated spending period for the grant would be December 2022 – May 2023, with a targeted “open” date for projects around Memorial Day Weekend of 2023. However, we recognize with some supply chain issues that some adjustments may need to be made to accommodate issues out of the control of the program and the communities implementing their proposals.
  • My team has the ability to supplement the $10,000 grant. Should we show our full budget, or just what the grant covers?
    We recommend showing the impact of the project by including your full budget, even if exceeds the grant amount. We just ask you to note the items on the budget supported by an external funding source(s).
  • The target open date is May 2023. Is it possible to have funds extend beyond that deadline if we plan to continue improvements throughout the summer?
    Yes. The target date is set to allow the community to enjoy starting in the summer. If your proposal takes less time or needs a bit more time to implement, that date can be flexible. We only ask that any delays be communicated with the program team.
  • Are there neighborhood/community restrictions for the program?
    No, the only restriction is the site must be located within the City of Columbus corporation limits. However, preference will be given to proposals located within identified opportunity neighborhoods.
  • We want to use 2 sites as part of our project but are not sure if we will get property owner approval for both in time. What should we do?
    We recommend that you still show the entire proposed idea for both sites, even if you do not have site control/approval for both sites. Elements being added to the site that you do not have control over should be noted as such. Please note that the jury may award the proposal contingent on the team receiving approval from the property owner.
  • Are we able to propose a project in the public right of way?
    Yes, but you will need to contact Public Service to determine if a project will be possible and what permits or processes need to be completed to comply.
  • Who do I contact if I want to put my proposal in a City of Columbus Park?
    Please contact Betty Blockinger ( or (614)645-3325) at Columbus Recreation and Parks for more information on how you can implement a project in a City managed park.
  • We are not in an opportunity neighborhood. Should we even apply?
    Yes, we do encourage any city of Columbus site to apply. While you may not be in an opportunity neighborhood, your project could still be awarded for your creativity, community benefit, and/or feasibility. There may be other situations or circumstances that would make your project idea a great asset! If your community lacks public art and you're proposing a mural, put that your neighborhood could use art to help with civic pride. If your community lacks green space and you want to re-establish this in a new pocket park for the neighborhood, share that with the jury. Your presentation is an opportunity to make a compelling argument, so share why this project is needed in your neighborhood.

All questions received will be posted below. Have a question to submit? Contact us.

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