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Promise Zones

In his 2013 State of the Union address, President Obama announced that he would designate 20 Promise Zones nationwide: urban, rural, and tribal communities where the Administration would partner with local leaders to create jobs, increase economic activity, improve educational opportunities, and reduce violent crime. On January 9, 2014, the first urban, rural, and tribal Promise Zones were announced in a ceremony at the White House. They are located in: San Antonio, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Southeastern Kentucky, and the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.

For communities selected, the federal government will partner to help the Promise Zones access the resources and expertise they need. To date, there are twelve federal agencies working in close collaboration to provide resources and expertise to urban, rural, and tribal Promise Zones to expand economic mobility and opportunity in their communities.

Promise Zones Overview

Federal Resources for Rural and Tribal Communities

Funding and Technical Assistance Opportunities

Fiscal Year 2014 Promise Zones Federal Programs


Secretary Julian Castro Talks about Creating Opportunities through Promise Zones

Promise Zones Federal Partners

For communities selected, the federal government will partner to help the Promise Zones access the resources and expertise they need. To date, the twelve federal agencies involved in revitalization efforts include:

Let's Move! is a comprehensive initiative, launched by the First Lady Michelle Obama dedicated to solving the problem of childhood obesity in a generation. Learn more about how to fight childhood obesity in your community, or schools.

Promise Zones Designees

The Obama administration designated five communities as Promise Zones in the first application round. The Administration will designate 15 more communities by the end of 2016.

Learn about the Promise Zones First Round Designees

Learn about the Promise Zones First Round Finalists

Promise Zones News & Announcements

View All Promise Zones News & Announcements

Second Round Promise Zones Designation

Thank you for your interest in this year's Promise Zones competition. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) intends to designate six urban communities.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) intends to designate at least one rural and at least one tribal community.

For the Second Round Promise Zones competition, there were 123 applications submitted: 97 urban applicants, 19 rural applicants, and 7 tribal applicants.

View the list of applicants.

The Promise Zones initiative is truly an interagency collaborative effort. Representatives from across the federal government are currently reviewing the applications to select the next round of designees. The next round of Promise Zone designations are expected to be announced in Spring 2015.

Promise Zones will not receive grant funding, but will benefit from technical assistance, coordinated federal staff support, and preferential access to certain existing federal funding streams. Promise Zone designations will have a term of ten years and may be extended as necessary to capture the full term of availability of the Promise Zone tax incentives if enacted by Congress. All federal resources are subject to statutory requirements and appropriations, and therefore will change throughout the Promise Zone designation period

To view the list of federal programs affiliated with the Promise Zone initiative, please go to the Funding and Technical Assistance Opportunities Web Page.

To receive updates, please subscribe to the Promise Zones mailing list.

Rural Gateway

The Rural Gateway is an information clearinghouse providing technical assistance, training workshops, and peer learning and resource sharing to support rural housing and economic development.


Please email questions about Promise Zones to

Subscribe to the Promise Zones Mailing List.