The directors of the planned Islamic community center and mosque near ground zero have applied for grants from an agency tasked with helping Lower Manhattan recover from the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Mr. Gamal has said he plans to raise the $140 million required to build the center by tapping small donors, enlisting paying members and courting corporations and philanthropists. Nothing has been raised yet, but the developers insist that their fund-raising efforts are going according to plan and that they have found interested donors.
In a statement, the developer, Sharif el-Gamal, said that the board of Park51, as the center is known, asked for about $5 million financing from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation about two weeks ago. The money, which would come from a pool of $2 billion in federal financing administered by the corporation, would be used for domestic violence prevention programs, language classes, art exhibitions and other social services at the center.