Downtown Revitalization Initiative

Downtown Revitalization Initiative

Downtown Revitalization Initiative

New York State's Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI), a cornerstone of the State's economic development program, transforms downtown neighborhoods into vibrant centers that offer a high quality of life and are magnets for redevelopment, business, job creation, and economic and housing diversity. These compact, walkable downtowns are a key ingredient to helping New York State rebuild its economy from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as to achieving the State’s bold climate goals by promoting the use of public transit and reducing dependence on private vehicles.

In its fifth year, the program will invest $200 million in up to 20 additional downtowns statewide. Participating communities will be nominated by the state’s ten Regional Economic Development Councils (REDCs) based on the downtown’s potential for transformation. Within each region, the REDC will nominate either two downtowns to receive $10 million each or one downtown to receive an award of $20 million to develop a downtown strategic investment plan and implement key catalytic projects that advance the community’s vision for revitalization.

The DRI is led by the Department of State. Communities receive support from private sector experts and a team of state agency staff led by the Department of State in close partnership with Empire State Development, and NYS Homes and Community Renewal. Other agencies are also involved in reviewing and implementing projects.

View Upcoming Community Events

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DRI Round 5

Highlights from Successful DRI Communities and Projects

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The Role of Public Art and Artist Housing in Downtown Revitalization.

Craft Beer

From Rust-Belt to Beer-Belt: Craft Beer and Downtown Revitalization in Upstate New York.

How it Works

Downtown Selection
Communities submit applications to the REDCs. Each REDC nominates one community to participate after a thorough evaluation of the downtown’s potential for transformation.
Strategic Planning
With technical assistance provided by the state, each participating community develops a Strategic Investment Plan that identifies specific projects that align with a unique vision for revitalization of the downtown area. Local planning committees oversee the effort.
Project Implementation
$9.7 million will be awarded in each DRI community to advance the most transformative projects from the Strategic Investment Plan. Additional projects may be implemented through the CFA or other funding sources.


DOS Community Infrastructure

Learn more about the Dept. of State’s Community Infrastructure Program and its role in increasing resilience and sustainable growth in NY’s communities.

Regional Economic Development Councils

The Regional Councils were established to transform the State’s approach to economic development to a community-based and performance-driven model.

HCR Office of Community Renewal

Learn more about the Office of Community Renewal and its role in strengthening the economic vitality of neighborhoods and downtowns.