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About Us

Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is the local nonprofit arts and culture agency that enhances the city’s quality of life through advancing and investing in the arts and diverse cultural programming. The work of HAA encourages Houston’s development and shapes its global reputation by fostering tourism and supporting and promoting the city’s creative economy.

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Public Art

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 + Civic Engagement

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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Capacity Building

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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Get Involved

Looking for a way to lend a hand? Investing in the arts and culture is an investment in the quality of life for all Houstonians. Join Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) as a donor, member, volunteer or panelist!

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City’s Initiative Grant

The City's Initiative (CI) Grant category provides one-time grants to City of Houston 501(c)3 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations for new opportunities that: (1) are not part of the applicant's annual budget or regular programming/annual events; and (2) 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.


2016-2017 (FY17) City's Initiative Grant

Grant Term: July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017
Application Opens: Bimonthly the first Monday after a deadline
Application Deadlines: Bimonthly, the last Friday of the month
Panel Reviews: Bimonthly
Notifications of Award: Bimonthly

Upcoming Deadlines

  • Friday, June 24, 2016, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, September 22, 2016)
  • Friday, August 26, 2016, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, November 24, 2016)
  • Friday, October 28, 2016, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, January 26, 2017)
  • Friday, December 30, 2016, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, March 30, 2017)
  • Friday, February 24, 2017, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Friday, May 26, 2017)
  • Friday, April 28, 2017, 5:30 p.m. (For projects beginning after Thursday, July 27, 2017)

Application Requirements

  • A preliminary meeting is required—at least 48 hours from a 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 does not meet 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 FY17 CI Guidelines




Grant Term: July 1, 2015- June 30, 2016

» 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

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