2014: A Year of Progress for Purpose Built Communities

Our impact is tangible.

Across the network of 10 Purpose Built Communities we now have 4,200 people living in high quality mixed-income housing; nearly 6,500 students are enrolled in our schools; 650 children attend early learning academies; and 175 program partners are engaged in the work.

Purpose Built Communities Network Members as of December 2014.
Purpose Built Communities Network Members as of December 2014.

We added 2 new Network Members: Houston, TX and Columbus, OH, bringing the total number of Network Members to 10.

  •  The partners in Houston include KIPP (which opened a K-8 school on site in 2014), the YMCA and St. Luke’s/Gethsemane United Methodist Church, Houston’s largest Methodist congregation.
  • The Columbus effort, involving numerous partners anchored by The Ohio State University, secured a $30 million Choice Neighborhood implementation grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, one of only four in the country this year.

Our Network Members made significant progress.  Some of the 2014 highlights include:

  • Birmingham has 64 high-quality townhomes (the first multi-family development in Woodlawn) under construction. Its six-school Woodlawn Innovation Network, with more than 2,500 students, is in its second year of operation.
  • Seventy Five North  in North Omaha  finalized its development master plan and will break ground on an $85 million mixed-use, mixed-income development in 2015.
  • Spartanburg‘s Northside initiative completed its Healthy Food Hub, which is home to a farmers market, cafe and fresh food store.
  • Charlotte‘s Renaissance West completed two phases of housing (335 units) and finalized a unique agreement with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools to open a shared decision-making K-8 school in the development (completely funded by the public school system).
  • Houston‘s CONNECT@6800 Bellaire opened a K-8 KIPP school on its 30 acre shared-use neighborhood campus.
  • Columbus‘s PACT initiative secured a $10 million grant from The Ohio State University to support health care initiatives and infill housing.
  • New Orleans‘ Bayou District Foundation finalized the long-in-negotiations public-private partnership agreement to build and operate a Championship golf course at City Park.
  • Drew Charter School in East Lake, Atlanta opened its new high school/middle school building.
Liberty Canzater, Butterfly Foundation founder and president, speaks during a ribbon-cutting ceremony held Thursday for Harvest Park, the new home of the Hub City Farmers' Market, the Butterfly Foundation and Monarch Cafe. credit: MICHAEL JUSTUS/michael.justus@shj.com
Liberty Canzater, Butterfly Foundation founder and president, speaks during a ribbon-cutting ceremony held Thursday for Harvest Park, the new home of the Hub City Farmers’ Market, the Butterfly Foundation and Monarch Cafe. credit: MICHAEL JUSTUS/michael.justus@shj.com

The Network Member Conference continues to grow.

  • We had 340 attendees at the Fifth Annual Network Member Conference in Charlotte, representing 45 communities. The Conference continues to get high marks from attendees, and it is a major factor in establishing Purpose Built as a significant player in the community redevelopment world. In 2015, we expect the trend of growth to continue in a new location with new Network Members and prospects represented. Stay tuned.
The 2014 Purpose Built Communities Network Member Conference, held from September 29-October 1 in Charlotte, NC.
The 2014 Purpose Built Communities Network Member Conference, held from September 29-October 1 in Charlotte, NC.