Thursday, December 15, 2011

Blueprint Communities Projects Awards Mini-Grant to Brownsville

Dennis Cremonese
Executive Director
Brownsville Area Revitalization Corporation

Neil Cotiaux
FHLBank Pittsburgh

Brownsville is Awarded Mini-Grant for Blueprint Communities Projects

Pittsburgh, PA, December 8, 2011 – The Blueprint Communities initiative of the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLBank) of Pittsburgh has awarded Brownsville a $10,000 mini-grant. The grant will be used to help fund the Brownsville Project, an initiative of the National Road Heritage Corridor.

The Brownsville Project has three components: a comprehensive study of current physical conditions of the vacant buildings in the Brownsville Commercial Historic District owned by the Redevelopment Authority of Fayette County; development of design guidelines for the entire district; and a market analysis of the community to aid in redevelopment efforts within the Historic District.

Earlier this year, FHLBank invited active Blueprint Communities in Pennsylvania and West Virginia to submit project applications as part of a competitive mini-grant funding process. Projects were evaluated for their ability to expand the capacity of Blueprint teams, leverage dollars, and positively impact the community. Of 16 applications received, six projects were awarded a total of $63,000.

The Blueprint Communities effort in Brownsville is spearheaded by a committee made up of business and Borough leaders. The group was formed in 2005 as one of 22 original Blueprint Communities across Pennsylvania. The initiative was created to help civic leaders in older, smaller communities develop enhanced leadership skills, create greater capacity to enact positive change, and formulate a fresh vision and strategy to meet pressing community needs.

Blueprint Communities is expected to serve as an ongoing catalyst for projects of local importance. In the past, the Brownsville team has been involved in the Brownsville Annual Community Festival, in a partnershippartnered with the Brownsville Environmental Education Program, and is working towardon publishing a water trail map of the Middle Monongahela River.

FHLBank Pittsburgh is a wholesale bank that serves the housing finance and community and economic development needs of its owner-members. FHLBank Pittsburgh provides reliable access to low-cost funds, competitive pricing in the purchase of mortgage loans, correspondent banking, technical assistance, affordable housing grants and other programs so members can better serve their own communities. FHLBank Pittsburgh is privately capitalized and funded and does not use taxpayer dollars. As of September 30, 2011, the Bank had 300 members in its district of Delaware, Pennsylvania and West Virginia and held approximately $47 billion in assets. FHLBank Pittsburgh is one of twelve Banks in the Federal Home Loan Bank System, established by Congress in 1932 to support the residential mortgage activities of local financial institutions.
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