Hoping to parlay some of Austin's history into sweet tourism dollars, the city's economic development department has launched a grant program that will fund select projects at historic sites.

The city has made $2.7 million available through its new Heritage Preservation Grant program "to promote tourism through historic preservation and inclusive projects representative of Austin’s history," it announced Tuesday. The grants are for "capital, planning, educational, or marketing projects," according to the announcement.

“The history and heritage of Austin is a huge draw for our tourists and is a staple of our community culture,” said Sylnovia Holt-Rabb, director of the City of Austin Economic Development Department. “The Heritage Preservation Grant provides critical funding to local historic sites, ensuring that generations to come—locals and tourists alike—can enjoy the gemstones of our community.” 

Business and entities including for-profit, government, and nonprofit organizations, can apply for the grants, according to the release:

Grant projects must engage new audiences, be history-informing, promote diverse stories, and attract tourism to historically designated sites. Applicants may submit either a capital, planning, educational, or marketing proposal per funding cycle. All grants will be awarded on a competitive basis and scored by a panel reviewing the project’s impact on preservation, tourism, access, and project viability.

The department will stream webinars and offer workshops and office hours with more information about the grant program through mid-September the deadline for the online applications is September 22.