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Friday, May 24, 2024

Williamsburg City Council Approves Seven Projects for Tourism Development Fund Grants

WILLIAMSBURG — The Williamsburg City Council voted unanimously on Monday, Nov. 6, to approve Tourism Development Fund (TDF) grants for seven projects in Fiscal Year 2024, the city announced. 

Approved projects include:

  • African American Heritage Trail: $316,900 in FY24 and $200,000 earmarked for FY25, including construction of the trail plus the purchase of an app with audio as well as trail maps for visitors. 
  • Colonial Williamsburg Arrivals Center: $500,000 in FY24 and $500,000 earmarked for FY25, including funding for the design and development of the center. 
  • First Baptist Church Improvements: $250,000 in FY24, including completion and installation of a redesigned and updated exhibition space. 
  • Stryker Center Gallery Enhancements: $35,000 in FY24, includes the addition of new interactive and digital displays and improved methods for showcasing three-dimensional artwork. 
  • Wayfinding Phases 2 & 3: $425,000 in FY24, including parking signage and digital kiosks. 
  • Wayfinding Phase 4: $100,000 in FY24, including gateway features. 
  • Williamsburg Entertainment Venue: $100,000 in FY24, $100,000 earmarked for FY25 and $1 million in subsequent years until the project is paid, including design and development of the venue as well as debt service. 

All seven projects were recommended by the Tourism Development Grant Review Committee, which reviewed the applications and selected qualified applicants to present their proposed project to the TDGRC earlier this year, the city said. 

The city council’s action completes the FY24 grant cycle for the Tourism Development Fund, the city said, explaining this year’s application cycle is the second TDF after an extended pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The first application cycle concluded in November 2019. 

According to the city, the purpose of the TDF is to “increase patronage to restaurants, hotels, and events in the City of Williamsburg through financial assistance and reinvestments in tourism products, place-making projects, and public-private partnerships. The TDF is funded through half of the 1% sales tax collected by the city that was established by Senate Bill 942 (2018). The other half of the 1% sales tax is allocated to the Williamsburg Tourism Council to market the Williamsburg region to visitors.”

More information on the Tourism Development Fund can be found at williamsburgva.gov/tdf. 

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