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Boyertown organizations receive $1 million in grants, offer of additional $500,000 in matching grants

Dec 15, 2017 • by Berks County Community Foundation

Donations will support Building a Better Boyertown’s Vision & Action Plan

BOYERTOWN, Pa. – BB&T today announced $1 million in grants to Boyertown organizations from the BB&T Economic Growth Fund of Berks County Community Foundation. The donations will support the downtown-revitalization organization Building a Better Boyertown and direct funds to organizations determined by its Boyertown Vision & Action Plan.

“BB&T has a long history of supporting our communities and is especially pleased to continue our support of Boyertown, a community on the rise,” said BB&T Community Banking Group Executive Scott V. Fainor. “We are proud to provide community leadership at this level, and we believe BB&T’s investment will play a significant role in the future health and prosperity of Boyertown. I commend the entire community for the hard work they put into the action plan, and we are pleased to support the organizations prioritized by the community’s input.”

In conjunction with the BB&T/National Penn merger last year, $5 million was donated to two local foundations, Berks County Community Foundation and Lehigh Valley Community Foundation, with each receiving $2.5 million to establish a BB&T Economic Growth Fund.

During this phase of allocation from the BB&T Economic Growth Fund of Berks County Community Foundation, the following grants were given:

To Building a Better Boyertown:

$20,000 grant – For set up and construction of a tourism office$120,000 grant – For a tourism website, brochures, signs and destination consultant expertise$94,000 grant – For additional staff support for tourism office$10,000 grant – For development of a business recruitment package and materials$3,000 grant – For initial membership in regional convention and visitor bureaus

To Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust:

$753,000 grant – For a railyard restoration project

In addition to the $1 million donated, BB&T offered both organizations an additional $500,000 total in matching grants, should they raise the following amounts first on their own:

To Building a Better Boyertown:

$15,000 matching grant – For a trail feasibility study$5,000 matching grant – For relaunch of the Farmers Market$30,000 matching grant – To purchase a trolley

To Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust:

$450,000 matching grant – For a railyard restoration project

Previously, the BB&T Economic Growth Fund of Berks County Community Foundation awarded a $100,000 grant to Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust in January 2017, and a $120,000 grant to Building a Better Boyertown in December 2016 to support the Boyertown Vision & Action Plan, which integrates several exciting projects in the area into a unified blueprint for economic growth. The $1 million in new grants and $500,000 in matching grants support elements of that plan.

“This funding is going to be transformational for Boyertown,” said Adrianne Blank, Main Street Manager at Building a Better Boyertown. “Because of the community engagement process of the Town Vision project, the realization that tourism is Boyertown’s key economic driver was unveiled. Our progress toward being a top tourism destination in Pennsylvania is going to leap forward simply because of these grants from BB&T.”

Nathaniel Guest, executive director of the Colebrookdale Railroad Preservation Trust, agreed and said the railyard project would greatly impact Boyertown’s economy.

“Tourism is already a driving force in Boyertown, and the ability to upgrade our facility will only draw in more people,” Guest said. “We are grateful to BB&T, and the Community Foundation, and look forward to putting their investment to work.”

Berks County Community Foundation is pleased to see more investment in the Boyertown area, which has already received more than $1 million in funding from various other funds at the Community Foundation over the last two decades.

“It’s been our pleasure to administer these funds to the Boyertown area as we’ve watched the relationship between that community and BB&T continue,” said Kevin K. Murphy, president of Berks County Community Foundation. “This funding is truly going to strengthen the economy of the Boyertown area.”

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