U.S. EDA Announces 21 Build Back Better Regional Challenge Winners

A marquee initiative of EDA’s American Rescue Plan, this program awards between $25 and $65 million to rebuild regional economies across the nation.

The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced the 21 winners of the $1 billion Build Back Better Regional Challenge (BBBRC) — the marquee initiative of EDA’s American Rescue Plan programs and the most impactful regional economic development competition in decades.build back better

The 21 winners — each a regional coalition of partnering entities — will receive awards between $25 and $65 million to implement an average of six projects that together will rebuild regional economies, promote inclusive and equitable recovery, and create thousands of jobs in industries of the future including clean energy, next-generation manufacturing, and biotechnology.

The BBBRC is an unprecedented competitive federal grant program that provides each regional coalition with significant funding to tackle a wide variety of projects — including entrepreneurial support, infrastructure, workforce development, and innovation — to drive inclusive economic growth. The projects aim to develop and strengthen regional industry clusters — all while embracing economic equity, creating good-paying jobs, and enhancing U.S. competitiveness globally. The coalition lead for each winner is listed below.
(*Grant amounts are approximate)

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U.S. EDA Build Back Better Regional Challenge Awardees

  • Central Valley Community Foundation (California)
    Coalition Name: F3 – Fresno-Merced Future of Food
    Grant Amount: $65.1 million
  • City of Manchester (New Hampshire)
    The BioFabrication Cluster
    Grant Amount: $44 million
  • Coalfield Development (West Virginia)
    Coalition Name: Appalachian Climate Technologies (ACT Now) Initiative
    Grant Amount: $62.8 million
  • Detroit Regional Partnership Foundation (Michigan)
    Coalition Name: Global Epicenter of Mobility
    Grant Amount: $52.2 million
  • Empire State Development (New York)
    Coalition Name: Western New York’s Advanced Manufacturing Cluster
    Grant Amount: $25 million
  • Four Bands Community Fund (South Dakota)
    Coalition Name: Mountain | Plains Regional Native CDFI Coalition
    Grant Amount: $45 million
  • Georgia Tech Research Corporations (Georgia)
    Coalition Name: GA-AIM
    Grant Amount: $65 million
  • Greater New Orleans Development Foundation (Louisiana)
    Coalition Name: H2theFuture
    Grant Amount: $50 million
  • Greater St. Louis, Inc. (Missouri)
    Coalition Name: St. Louis Tech Triangle
    Grant Amount: $25 million
  • Indian Nations Council of Governments (Oklahoma)
    Coalition Name: Tulsa Regional Advanced Mobility Cluster
    Grant Amount: $39 million
  • Invest Nebraska Corporation (Nebraska)
    Coalition Name: Heartland Robotics Cluster
    Grant Amount: $25 million
  • North Carolina Biotechnology Center (North Carolina)
    Coalition Name: Accelerate NC – Life Sciences Manufacturing
    Grant Amount: $25 million
  • Oklahoma City Economic Development Foundation (Oklahoma)
    Coalition Name: Oklahoma Biotech Innovation Cluster Initiative
    Grant Amount: $35 million
  • Osceola County Board of County Commissioners (Florida)
    Coalition Name: Building Central Florida’s Semiconductor Cluster for Broad-Based Prosperity
    Grant Amount: $50.8 million
  • Port of Portland (Oregon)  
    Coalition Name: Oregon Mass Timber Coalition
    Grant Amount: $41.4 million
  • Southeast Conference (Alaska)
    Coalition Name: Alaska Mariculture Cluster
    Grant Amount: $49 million
  • Southwestern Pennsylvania New Economy Collaborative (Pennsylvania)
    Coalition Name: Southwestern Pennsylvania New Economy Collaborative
    Grant Amount: $62.7 million
  • The State University of New York (SUNY) at Binghamton (New York)        
    Coalition Name: New Energy New York
    Grant Amount: $63.7 million
  • The University of Texas at El Paso (Texas)
    Coalition Name: West Texas A&D Cluster
    Grant Amount: $40 million
  • Virginia Biotechnology Research Partnership Authority (Activation Capital) (Virginia)
    Coalition Name: Virginia Advanced Pharma Manufacturing (APM) and R&D
    Grant Amount: $52.9 million
  • Wichita State University (Kansas)
    Coalition Name: South Kansas Coalition
    Grant Amount: $51.4 million

The 21 BBBRC winners were chosen from 60 EDA-designated finalists that each received approximately $500,000 in funding and gained technical assistance to continue developing their cluster strategies. Those 60 finalists were chosen from a Phase 1 applicant pool of 529 applications, which exemplifies the demand for transformational economic development. EDA will continue to support all 60 finalists with the creation of a Community of Practice that will provide technical support, foster connectedness with peer regions, and build capacity.

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