Downtown Development Districts Grant Program

The Downtown Development Districts Act was created to leverage state resources in a limited number of designated areas in Delaware's cities and towns to:

  • spur private capital investment in commercial business districts and other neighborhoods;
  • stimulate job growth and improve the commercial vitality of our cities and towns; and
  • help build a stable community of long-term residents in our downtowns and other neighborhoods.

Under this Act, funding was allocated through the General Assembly to DSHA for the purpose of establishing and administering the DDD Grant Program. Investors who make Qualified Real Property Investments (QRPI) to commercial, industrial, residential, and mixed-use buildings or facilities may apply to DSHA for a DDD Grant.

To be Eligible to Apply for a DDD Grant

  • The QRPI must be made within the boundaries of a designated DDD.
  • The QRPI must be made in conformance with the approved District plan.
  • The QRPI must be in excess of the required MQIT (deductible) and minimum QRPI for the specific set-aside.
  • The QRPI must be made after the date the real property location is officially incorporated within the boundary of a designated District.
  • The Investor must meet site control requirements (e.g. legal title, sales agreement, or owner's consent).

Learn more about Delaware's DDD Program
Click the link above to view an Adobe Spark Page on Downtown Development Districts which highlights incentives offered by each of Delaware's eight DDD communities designated in 2015 and 2016. Within the Spark Page, view statewide DDD and City of Dover interactive maps, a video on the City of Milford's DDD, and project photos. This Spark Page was developed by the University of Delaware's Institute of Public Administration in cooperation with the Delaware State Housing Authority, Office of State Planning Coordination, and Delaware Department of Transportation.

Centralized DDD Incentives Site
The Office of State Planning Coordination maintains this website, which includes information on all available incentives from state and local partners. Available incentives include DDD grants, Delaware Historic Tax Credits, bridge loans, expedited permitting, funding for architectural and engineering work, property tax abatements and more.

Grant Opportunities for Pursuing U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Silver Certification
DSHA received a Strategic Opportunity Funds for Adaptation (SOFA) grant to pay for third-party costs associated with achieving the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification. This grant is capped at $30,000 per building or facility regardless of documented third-party costs.

  1. LEED Overview
  2. May 2017 Webinar Recording
    1. Webinar Presentation
  3. LEED Accredited Professionals in Delaware
  4. Sample Letter of Intent

DDD Annual Report

  1. 2015 DDD Annual Report
  2. 2016 DDD Annual Report
  3. 2017 DDD Annual Report

District Designations

  • January 11, 2015 The Governor announced the initial three DDD Districts: Dover, Seaford and Wilmington.
  • August 10, 2016 The Governor announced five additional DDD Districts: Georgetown, Harrington, Laurel, Milford and Smyrna.

The corresponding District Plans for the newly designated Districts will serve as the focal point for coordinated action by state, local, and private entities.

For additional information including District Plans and Maps for each of the designated Districts, please use the link below:
Office of State Planning
Interactive Map - Use this link to determine if a property is located within a designated District

Available Funding

  • DSHA has established two funding set-asides for DDD Grant awards, the Small Project Set-Aside and the Large Project Set-Aside, to ensure a variety of projects have ample access to the DDD funding.

  • The Large Project Set-Aside has been further divided into a General Pool and a District Pool to ensure all Districts have reasonable access to the DDD funding. As with the initial round of funding for the first three designated Districts, DSHA has allocated 50% of the Large Project Set-Aside to each of the pools.

  • District allocations are based on the populations of each District.



MQIT (1)


SMALL Project Set-Aside *

$ 1,000,000

$ 15,000

$50,000 per building or facility (2)

LARGE Project Set-Aside **

$ 8,075,000

$ 25,000

$1,500,000 per building or facility (3)

* Approximate balance. Applications processed daily.



General Pool


$ 4,037,500

District Pool


$ 4,037,500


$ 557,175



$ 141,313



$ 1,833,025



$ 464,312



$ 153,425



$ 141,313



$ 395,675



$ 351,262



$ 8,075,000

(1) The Minimum Qualified Investment Threshold (MQIT) for Large Projects is the minimum amount of Qualified Real Property Investment (QRPI) required to be made by an Investor to qualify for a Large Project DDD Grant. The MQIT for Large Projects is treated similarly to a deductible and is not eligible for a Grant. The MQIT for Small Projects is the required minimum investment only and is eligible for a Grant.

(2) A building or facility may be eligible for multiple small project grants with approval from DSHA. An investor may be eligible to apply for two small project grants, if DSHA can determine that there are clearly two eligible investments with QRPIs greater than $15,000 each.

(3) DDD Grants are limited to $1,500,000 per building or facility within a five-consecutive-year period, starting with the year in which a grant is first awarded or reserved. A $1,500,000 Grant requires a QRPI greater than $41,000,000.

How to Apply

Please refer to the DDD Grant Program Guidelines which can be found below for details on available funding, how to apply, important dates, eligibility requirements, and the DDD Grant process.

Important Dates

  • September 26, 2017 DDD Grant Program information for the new funding round posted to DSHA Website
  • December 15, 2017 Large Project Reservation applications due to DSHA by 4:00 p.m.


Please download and review the documents below to learn more about the DDD Grant Program, to obtain forms, and to determine if you qualify.

DDD Grant Program AT A GLANCE

  1. A Quick Overview of the DDD Grant Program for the Fall 2017 Funding Round

DDD Grant Program Guidelines and Applications

  1. DDD Grant Program Guidelines
  2. Small Project Lite-Reservation Application
  3. Small Project Grant Application
  4. Large Project Grant Reservation Application
    1. DDD Priority Consideration Guidelines
  5. Troubleshooting Browser Issues

If you are having trouble viewing the Small or Large Project Grant Application, please refer to the above link "Troubleshooting Browser Issues".

Additional Forms

  1. Multiple-Owner Form (includes Coordination Form)
  2. Tenant Owner Consent Form (includes Coordination Form)
  3. Blank Fillable W-9 Form
  4. Forms and Guidelines for Large Project CPA Attestation
    1. Agreed Upon Procedures for Attestation of Costs Guidelines
    2. Attestation of Costs Forms
    3. CPA Attestation Report
    4. Sample Engagement Letter

Large Project DDD Grant Applications and Reservation Awards

  1. Funding Round 5 – Awarded June 2017
    1. Large Project Applications Received
    2. Large Project Reservation Awards
  2. Funding Round 4 – Awarded January 2017
    1. Large Project Applications Received
    2. Large Project Reservation Awards
  3. Funding Round 3 - Awarded June 2016
    1. Large Project Applications Received
    2. Large Project Reservation Awards

DSHA Contact Person

Do you have questions about this program? Would you like to suggest an improvement to this Web page? Please contact Penny Pierson at 302.739.4263.