How Indianapolis Rescued Its Decaying Inner City Using Grants

April 25, 2008
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The best part of my work is seeing grants transform lives. When they transform whole cities, I really want to tell you about it!

A few years ago Indianapolis, America’s 12th largest city, faced challenges similar to those of many cities around the country. Much of its downtown was dying. Whole neighborhoods were filled with abandoned houses, and drug dealers and prostitutes had taken over the streets.

Visionary citizens determined to take back the city. They created the Greater Indianapolis Neighborhoods Initiative, and formed an Abandoned Houses Task Force. The goal was to get more people involved in their vision, and create a strategic plan for bringing the inner city neighborhoods back to life.

The first project was the Fall Creek Neighborhood, which covers fifty acres just north of downtown. It is part of Center Township, which had the highest poverty rate of any of the city’s nine townships, and was in the worst shape, physically. The area had been designated an Enterprise Community. Enterprise Communities, Designated Census Tracts, or other labels indicating blight, often signal there are excellent opportunities for affordable housing grants and creative low-cost financing for affordable housing.

The City leveraged a HUD grant of $4 million as seed money. 72 vacant and deteriorating houses were demolished, 47 were renovated, and 270 new single-family homes were built. The plan includes commercial development, including 9 condo buildings with shops on the ground floor and housing above. Streets and infrastructure are being improved, and a system of parks and green space is being developed.

Today, around 300 new families have moved into the neighborhood. They love the beautiful Victorian houses, the tree-lined streets, the proximity to downtown, and the feeling of belonging fostered by the neighborhood association.

Fall Creek isn’t an example of yuppies moving into a neighborhood and squeezing out the urban poor. Instead, Fall Creek shows the best of what affordable housing programs can accomplish. 51% of the residents of the neighborhood earn below 80% of Median Metropolitan Income. This blending of hardworking people at all levels of society has recreated a genuine neighborhood, not a sterile upper middle class enclave.

Success breeds success. This year Indianapolis was awarded $9.8 million in Community Development Block Grants, making it the largest single CDBG recipient. Indianapolis, like other large and smaller cities throughout the country, will “trickle down” this grant money to smart, motivated real estate investors for projects of all sizes – from a single house to an apartment complex to new construction.

If you are interested in taking advantage of these programs, if you’d like to provide housing to good people while building wealth for yourself and your family, you can find everything you need to get started in our comprehensive program on government real estate grants and low-cost loan programs. It’s called The New American Land Rush: How to Buy Real Estate with Government Money. You can read success stories and watch a brief video at:

www.NewAmericanLandRush.com

In my next posting I’ll talk about how private investors like you and me can join forces with non-profits, and access huge pools of funding.

4 Responses to How Indianapolis Rescued Its Decaying Inner City Using Grants

  1. Tom Humes on April 25, 2008 at 8:19 am

    Nice Site layout for your blog. I am looking forward to reading more from you.

    Tom Humes

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  4. [...] tapblog4 wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptThe City leveraged a HUD grant of $4 million as seed money. 72 vacant and deteriorating houses were demolished, 47 were renovated, and 270 new single-family homes were built. The plan includes commercial development, including 9 condo … [...]

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