Photo by Matt Dayak.

The PNC Foundation has awarded the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) a $10 million non-revolving line of credit for equitable economic recovery initiatives citywide.

“This is a low-cost, long-term source of capital,” Cathy Niederberger, executive vice president of community development banking for PNC, tells NEXTpittsburgh. “Given the current operating environment, the investment is structured to help best facilitate the intended outcome, which is to help stabilize some struggling small businesses and help others develop and grow.”

The funds will be distributed as follows:

  • $6.5 million to be used for the COVID-19 Recovery Loan Fund. created to help City of Pittsburgh businesses affected by the coronavirus to re-open, stabilize, and thrive. The capital, up to $75,000, can be used for hiring, payroll, e-commerce, sales/marketing and inventory.
  • $1 million to be used for Catapult: Startup to Storefront, a 12-month business incubation program to support new and growing minority-led businesses. It was created by the URA, Circles Greater Pittsburgh and East Liberty Development, Inc.
  • $2.5 million to be transferred to Invest PGH, Inc., the City of Pittsburgh’s new CDFI. This is a spin-off of the URA and will be mission-focused on building and supporting minority- and women-owned businesses that provide quality jobs or create and preserve high-quality, affordable housing.

The URA and PNC are committing 60% of the funds to support low-to-moderate income communities and minority-owned businesses, and 15% to support childcare providers.

“PNC Community Development Banking is focused every day on helping strengthen the economic vitality of the communities where we live and work,” says Niederberger. “The work the URA is doing to support small business in low-moderate-income neighborhoods couldn’t be more aligned with our goals. We have no doubt that this investment will make a big impact in our hometown.”

“The URA is extremely grateful for this incredibly generous award. PNC provides a model for what corporations, who’ve expressed a commitment to addressing racial and economic disparities in our city and country, can do to make an immediate impact,” says URA Deputy Executive Director Diamonte Walker.

“PNC’s investment recognizes how the new URA is creating tools that deepen support and investments in Pittsburgh’s diverse business community and neighborhoods,” URA Executive Director Greg Flisram says. “We are excited about their commitment and the role it will play in our city’s equitable recovery moving forward.”

The URA Board of Directors approved the URA-PNC agreement at its regular August board meeting held virtually today.

The URA Board also approved to:

  • Allocate $252,000 to Invest PGH, Inc. for operations, and $2,248,000 for lending capital.
  • Assign a portion of the Micro-Enterprise Loan portfolio to Invest PGH, Inc. and to execute a related co-op agreement between the URA and Invest PGH, Inc.

NEXT staff

The staff at NEXTpittsburgh writes about the people driving change in the region and the innovative and cool things happening here.