Columbus, OH

Through the middle of the 1900s in racially-segregated Columbus, well-known African-American entertainers, such as the likes of Sammy Davis, Jr. and Ella Fitzgerald, frequently performed to white audiences downtown, but they were not welcome as overnight guests in that part of the city. They instead spent their evenings performing again and sleeping in the Near East Side – a vibrant, predominately African-American residential area. In the 1960s, this area was decimated by a new interstate highway. Today, PACT’s mission is focused on enhancing the quality of life in the Near East Side.

PACT Collaboration

The Ohio State University, City of Columbus and the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) embarked on a transformational community development initiative for a large part of the City’s Near East Side. In an area of over 800 acres—which is roughly equivalent to that of Downtown Columbus—these three organizations promised to develop a revitalization plan that was based on the community’s collective vision with achievable strategies and clearly identified implementation actions. Together, they formed the planning organization Partners Achieving Community Transformation, or PACT.

View PACT partners that support the historic Near East Side of Columbus

Community Engagement

PACT engaged the community for more than two years and held dozens of public meetings, open houses, community conversations and other events. From those efforts emerged the Blueprint for Community Investment, a comprehensive, long-term strategy that helps guide the redevelopment efforts within the PACT geography. Since its adoption in 2013, PACT, with the support of its funding partners and its residents, has been working every day to implement the Blueprint.

View the Blueprint for Community Investment