The East Lake Community in Atlanta, Georgia, one of the city’s poorest communities, is now a paradigm of community revitalization that serves as a national model for Purpose Built Communities, a consulting group on neighborhood turnarounds that is gaining traction, primarily across the Southeast. Now in East Lake, mixed-income housing is woven between shops, local eateries, schools, a family center, a YMCA, and two golf courses.
Seventeen years ago, a group of community activists and philanthropists took on the challenge of transforming East Lake by combining mixed-income housing, a cradle-to-college education pipeline, community services, and facilities to lift up low-income residents and attract middle-income families to the neighborhood.
This approach—pieced together over several years—now constitutes the “Purpose Built model.” At the core of the model is a new neighborhood with several key features:
Quality mixed-income housing that ensures low-income residents can afford to remain in the neighborhood and that also draws new residents from across the income spectrum;
An effective, independently run cradle-to-college educational approach that ensures low-income children start school ahead of grade level, and that also attracts middle-income families and eradicates educational performance gaps; and
Community facilities and services that not only support low-income families who may need extra help to break the cycle of poverty, but that also tie the neighborhood together and create a sense of community.
Learn more about Purpose Built Communities