COVINGTON, Ky. — Seven of Covington’s 19 neighborhoods will receive up to $5,000 thanks to a city grant program for projects in the community.
The neighborhood grants are relatively small, but the hope is that they make a big difference in each community.
This year, part of Mainstrasse's neighborhood grant will go to fixing signage. In Covington’s Peaselburg neighborhood, old planters will be replaced, and new signs are coming. Other beautification projects, like seasonal wreaths and perennials, will be added using the grant.
Neighborhood Services director Ken Smith knows the city can’t do it all, but these small grants let neighbors take on the projects they want.
"There's things the neighborhoods want to do, things that are priorities for neighborhood groups, that may be too small to get on our radar, or may be difficult for us to realize the necessity or benefit of the idea of the improvement,” he said.
But what they can do is listen. Covington now offers grants of up to $5,000, and neighborhood groups apply for what they need.
"It's really great. I live in a neighborhood in Covington, and my neighborhood submitted a grant application this year,” Smith said. “I'm excited for it, to put mature trees in the park in our community. It's something that wouldn't rise to the level of city hall."
Covington’s city commission passed the order Tuesday for seven neighborhoods to receive funding.
In Mainstrasse, it also means they'll install a trash can specifically for pizza boxes, plus street banners and neighborhood sign repairs.
"These small pockets of money the city is offering these groups makes sure those who are passionate about the city, and their corner of the city continues to grow,” said Commissioner Tim Dowling during Tuesday’s meeting.
Smith says programs like this help the river city of about 40,000 people seem a little more neighborly.
"But if you can get together with your neighbors and people in your neighborhood,” he said, “you can build the sense of community on the block or neighborhood level. Get to know your neighbors, and effect change."