We are engaging community, building partnerships, securing funding, and helping set a new course for the Proctor Creek Community.
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Emerald Corridor Foundation has been engaged in conversations with the Proctor Creek communities about neighborhood stabilization and revitalization. We continue to learn and understand the needs and challenges shaping the local neighborhood landscape. Through this open dialogue, we have been developing a program of partners and services and have established a series of core goals and objectives, which include:
Develop an Affordable
- Stabilize existing homeowners
- Rehabilitate damaged homes
- Build new affordable, and workforce housing
- Attract measured and appropriate market housing as conditions become appropriate
- Reduce transiency
- Reduce vacant lots
- Provide a pathway from rental to home ownership through down payment assistance and housing credits
Create Vibrant Educational Opportunities
- Establish a high-performing KIPP K – 8 School with STEM focus as the first step in a complete educational pipeline
- Present professional development opportunities for high quality teachers
- Design family support programs
- Provide afterschool and summer services
- Support early childhood learning centers who offer critical early childhood (6 weeks to 6 years) educational programming
Improve Community Wellness
- Partner with YMCA to offer health and fitness services to the community, and programs to Woodson Park Academy children and families
- Make healthy food options more accessible (grocery store, community garden)
- Emphasize arts and culture through restoration of the Grove Theatre and neighborhood arts programs
- Advocate and plan for new parks, trails, greenspaces and recreational fields
Spur Economic Development
- Attract new partners and collaborate with existing ones to focus job/workforce and entrepreneurial training programs in Proctor Creek neighborhoods
- Incorporate mixed-use properties with housing, office, and retail components
- Recruit and incentivize new businesses in viable employment centers
- Obtain Opportunity Zone designation to encourage job growth and opportunity
- Advocate for improved transit connectivity to support better access to jobs
Ensure Long-Term Sustainability
- Restore the natural systems of Proctor Creek
- Create safe public spaces that support community health and recreation
- Identify brownfield properties requiring large-scale clean up and advocate for remediation
- Utilize green building standards to ensure optimal energy efficiency in homes and all new capital construction project
Grove Park Initiative
A Major Step Forward
The Emerald Corridor Foundation is focused on improving the quality of life in the distressed neighborhoods in the Proctor Creek area of Northwest Atlanta. Our primary program effort is focused on the Grove Park community utilizing best practices designed to break the cycle of poverty.
The common indicators of stubborn poverty—poor health, low employment and income figures, higher percentages of single-parent homes, lower graduation rates, etc. now characterize this neighborhood. We are focused on finding resources and building supportive partnerships that will fundamentally alter the future path of the neighborhood toward higher achievement and earning potential for all residents.
Through a cross-sectoral intensive set of school, housing, wellness, and other investments, Emerald Corridor Foundation is committed to bringing a comprehensive set of investments that are proven to uplift distressed communities. With early childhood interventions like Head Start, to after school programs, summer learning, accessible healthcare, affordable housing, high quality education, recreation, etc., Emerald Corridor Foundation and partners will provide the necessary support to wrap around and children and families and help them thrive. To achieve this kind of holistic work, Emerald Corridor Foundation is partnering with the YMCA of Metro Atlanta, Atlanta Public Schools, KIPP of Metro Atlanta, and the Fox Theatre Institute, True Colors Theater, Atlanta Habitat for Humanity, Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Fund and others.
The Emerald Corridor Foundation has made a commitment to lead the implementation of this Grove Park collaboration and build the framework and context for of the partners for the years and decades to come. As the ‘Community Quarterback’ Emerald Corridor Foundation will act as the overall lead agency that develops the program and partnerships, fundraises needed capital and operating dollars, coordinates the implementation program and timeline, and engages the community. This role will include assessing best practices, and identifying additional components of revitalization for the neighborhood such as economic development, food insecurity, public health and job training, the arts, etc.
- Secured $18.5 million in funding from Atlanta Public Schools for construction of a new Woodson Park Academy, K–8 school building slated to open in 2020
- Advocated for the approval of KIPP schools as the designated operator of Woodson Park Academy, beginning in august 2019
- Secured the partnership of the YMCA to raise $15 million for the construction of a new state-of-the-art community wellness center adjacent to Woodson Park Academy
- Created a partnership with Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre and the Fox Theatre Institute for a planned performing arts and school education program in a revitalized Depression-era theater located across the street from the Woodson Park Academy/YMCA complex
Proctor Creek Greenway
A Centerpiece for Community Activation
The City of Atlanta is taking the lead on Proctor Creek Greenway, a new seven-mile trail sited adjacent to the creek and within a protection zone that will cover vital and vulnerable buffers of the waterway. It is envisioned as a link between the future Atlanta BeltLine Corridor and the Chattahoochee River, with trails starting at the Bankhead MARTA station and passing along the south and western edges of the West Side, and north end of Grove Park.
The Proctor Creek Greenway will connect multiple schools, including Grove Park Elementary, Boyd Elementary, Westside Atlanta Charter, Best Academy at Benjamin S. Carson, and Coretta Scott King High. The creation of new public green spaces is intended to reactivate vacant spaces, build safe community gathering places, inspire and assist community-based redevelopment, and support neighborhood institutions. The green spaces and constructed trails will be donated to the City of Atlanta.