People who live and work around Allianz Field could start seeing public art, facade fixes and streetscape improvements as soon as next year.

Neighbors United Funding Collaborative, a community benefits fund intended to support the neighborhoods around the St. Paul soccer stadium, launched this week.

When the City Council approved the stadium in 2016, council members floated the idea of a fund and asked a task force with representatives from the neighborhoods around the venue to hash out the details. The task force gathered feedback from community members, who said they want the money to go toward beautification efforts and supporting small and minority-owned businesses.

"Our goal from the beginning was to make sure the community had a seat at the table," First Ward Council Member Dai Thao said in a statement. "The funding collaborative will help us leverage financial support from partners of all sizes to benefit the families and businesses in the area."

The group so far has raised about $15,000, said Kate Mudge, executive director of the Hamline-Midway Coalition. An advisory committee will oversee how the money is spent.

"A lot of people have asked us, 'What exactly is this going to fund?'‚ÄČ" Mudge said. "The neat thing about these types of funds is we don't know until we actually receive those applications what's important."

To apply online for a seat on the advisory committee, visit bit.ly/342mSVB.

Emma Nelson