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About HAA

Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is a public-private initiative that invests in Houston’s arts and cultural sector, advances Houston’s reputation as an arts and culture destination, and works to elevate the quality of life for all Houstonians through arts and culture.

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Get Involved

Looking for a way to lend a hand in Houston's arts and cultural community? There are many ways to champion the arts by way of Houston's local, public-private arts agency!

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Public Engagement

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Arts & Business Council

The Arts & Business Council of Greater Houston (ABC) creates and expands relationships between nonprofit arts/cultural organizations and the corporate community. Focused on leadership and volunteerism, programs of the ABC build stronger support for the arts and foster a knowledge-sharing culture within the Greater Houston community.

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Civic Art + Design

Creating public spaces for civic and cultural use requires artists, designers, architects and the community to collaborate. By actively fostering these partnerships, both public and private, Civic Art + Design initiates, manages and maintains civic artworks throughout Houston. It serves a vital role as catalyst for change that generates a culturally relevant and rich environment for residents and visitors alike.

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Folklife + Traditional Arts

The Folklife + Traditional Arts program focuses on promoting and presenting the lively cultural traditions of the nation’s fourth largest metropolitan area. The program works in the city’s diverse neighborhoods and communities to explore and highlight the contemporary traditions that make Houston one of the most vibrant urban landscapes in the United States.

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Houston Arts Alliance provides grants annually to over 220 arts and cultural organizations and artists through a competitive grant allocation process. As most of our funding comes from the City of Houston Hotel Occupancy Tax, grants are awarded for the encouragement, promotion, improvement and application of the arts to promote tourism and the convention and hotel industry.

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Programs + Services

Houston Arts Alliance provides voice and leadership through its support of arts organizations and individual artists with programs and services that help build and foster a vibrant and creative community—these programs and services help to ensure that the arts professionals’ creative contributions remain a vital part of community life across Houston and the region.

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Research to inform public policy, education, tourism and business leaders about the benefits of the arts and creative economies.

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City’s Initiative

The City's Initiative (CI) program provides a one-time grant to City of Houston nonprofit arts or cultural organizations for a new opportunity that is not part of the applicant's annual budget or regular programming/annual events and that will promote cultural tourism. Examples include the opportunity to present an artist or performance that was not included in an annual season or an unanticipated invitation to perform or exhibit as part of a conference or meeting being held in Houston. Awards are restricted to artistic and marketing costs, with $10,000 as the maximum amount awarded.

For more information, email Grants staff at

Organizations approved for a grant will enter into an agreement with Houston Arts Alliance that outlines the arts activities that will be supported through grant evaluations and accountability requirements.


FY16 City's Initiative
Grant Term: July 1, 2015- June 30, 2016

Application Portal Opens: Bimonthly the first Monday after a deadline
Application Due: Bimonthly, the last Friday of the month
Panel Review: Bimonthly
Notification of Award: Bimonthly

Upcoming Deadlines

  • Monday*, December 28, 2015, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Sunday, March 27, 2016) 
  • Friday, February 26, 2016, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, May 26, 2016)
  • Friday, April 29, 2016, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, July 28, 2016)

*This deadline has been moved to a Monday in observation of the holiday weekend.

Application Requirements

  • A preliminary meeting is required, at least 48 hours from the City's Initiative deadline, for organizations looking to make application. To schedule a meeting, email
  • All requests for funding must be submitted at least 90 calendar days in advance of the project begin date. Please do not submit an application if your project begins less than 90 calendar days from this requirement.

The City’s Initiative application is available through an online application portal.

  1. To begin an application, click on the "Apply" button below.
  2. If you have not already done so, create a login and password under the “Sign Up” tab.
  3. Once logged in, you can begin the application by clicking on “Your Requests.”
  4. Please upload any supplemental materials for your proposal directly to the application under the “Uploads” tab.
  5. Email should you have any questions completing the online application.

» Download the FY16 CI Guidelines
» Download the FY16 CI Final Report Form



Grant Term: July 1, 2014 – June 30, 2015
» Download the FY15 CI Final Report Form
» Download the FY15 CI Guidelines

July 16
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