MotorCities National Heritage Area

Welcome to the 2018-19 MotorCities Challenge Grant Application

image 20100618131914 Grants

Projects must be largely automobile and/or labor heritage related and must deal with: Revitalization of our historic automotive and labor structures through preservation, Interpretation efforts which attempt to tell the story to a broad audience, Education activities which engage a specific audience and creates increased appreciation of our heritage and heritage tourism projects which promote the region and its heritage activities. 

The Challenge Grant Program funds projects up to $25,000.

Funds must be matched, but match can include cash, in-kind, donated goods and volunteer services.  

If you have a smaller project in mind we have a mini-grant program which does not require match and funds projects up to $1,500.  Click here to learn more about the mini-grants.

The Challenge Grant application for 2019 closed on February 28, 2019. The next scheduled grant cycle will open July 1 and close October 1, 2019.


Examples of some of our most recent grants:  

Automotive Hall of Fame (Dearborn): Supporting the production of new content for the attraction’s website, blog and subscriber emails -- $13,000;

Detroit Blues Society: Supporting the creation of an educational curriculum and companion book to the recent documentary on the life of Detroit blues luminary Uncle Jessie White -- $2,350;

Detroit Historical Society: Supporting restoration of a 1934 Chrysler Airflow CU four-door sedan from their collection -- $1,176;

Engineering Society of Detroit (Southfield):  Supporting production of a special episode of ESD’s popular television show “SciEngiMathexPloration” on trends in the transportation industry and STEM and skilled trade careers – $1,718;

Flint Cultural Center: Supporting the "Autos of Sloan" exhibit planned for the Courtland Center in Burton beginning on June 16, 2018 – $8,600;

Ford Piquette Avenue Plant (Detroit): Continued support of the building’s roof restoration -- $25,000;

Friends of Historic Hamtramck: Supporting the renovation of the main exhibit hall of the Hamtramck Historical Museum to present the exhibits in a way that will appropriately highlight the importance and educational value of the museum's collection including automotive and union artifacts -- $4,127;         

Friends of the Highland Recreation Area (Highland): Support for the rebuild of the existing center core doors of the Haven Hill Edsel Ford Barn, built by Edsel and Eleanor Ford in the 1920s -- $560;

Friends of Rouge Park (Detroit): Support to build four signs in Rouge Park explaining the automotive heritage of the property near the former estate of the early 20th Century Ford Motor Company executive Charles Sorenson -- $6,020;

Horace and Mabel Hackett Foundation (Jackson): Supporting a community awareness program for the revitalization and preservation of the Hackett Auto Museum, a building in Jackson steeped in automotive history -- $3,730;

Jewish Historical Society of Michigan (West Bloomfield): Supporting the 2018 J-Cycle bicycle tour of Detroit sharing stories of Jewish heroes and heroines and funds to develop an interactive route map to be distributed to riders and shared widely after the event -- $7,850;

Michigan Institute of Contemporary Art (Lansing): Supporting efforts to expand screenings of the 2014 documentary “Second Shift: From Crisis to Collaboration” to a national audience – $4,000;

Partnership for the Arts & Humanities (Canton): Continued support of efforts to restore the Cherry Hill Veteran’s Dormitory, built by Henry Ford in the 1940s to house disabled World War II veterans – $5,350;

Preservation Detroit: Supporting the creation of digital archive to preserve Corktown’s labor heritage -- $3,084;

R.E. Olds Transportation Museum (Lansing): Support of repairs to a portion of the Museum’s roof that have not been touched for more than 25 years -- $11,740.  

Six Rivers Land Conservancy (Rochester): Supporting the production of an event called the Six Rivers Country Drive Car Tour to engage the automotive manufacturing and enthusiast community in land and natural resource conservation in the region -- $3,000.

If you have any addtional questions, please contact the MotorCities Challenge Grant Program Coordinator:
Brian Yopp at 313-259-3425 x 307 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Some Tips:

Use the PDF version of grant application as a guide for elements of the grant that you should prepare prior to beginning the online process.

You can save your progress at any point throughout the process by clicking the “Save Progress & Resume Later” link. The 'Save Progress feature will not retain uploaded attachments.  Please upload attachments  as the final step when you are ready to submit.

Please maintain a back-up document in case there is an issue with retrieving your work.

Documents can be uploaded as doc,docx, xls, xlsx, and pdf formats

Useful Documents:

If you missed the grant training webnar, click here to view the full session.

Challenge Grant Application PDF version (for reference only.  Only applications submitted via the online system will be considered.)

Financial Guidelines

Performance Measure Report  (Due 60 days after end of grant or by 11/15 of each calendar year).

Partner Feedback Survey  (Due 60 days after completion of project).