the histories of our streets

Georgia State University students map Atlanta's past

Tag: Public Housing

Bowen Homes

Bowen Homes was an Atlanta Public Housing development built in 1964. It was one of the last developments that was demolished in 2009.  What was once one of Atlanta’s largest housing developments is now 74 acres of vacant land with only the abandoned A.D. Williams Elementary school left standing. Plans for redevelopment have been announced but work has yet to begin.

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Techwood Homes

Tanyard Creek
Image of Tanyard Bottom

In 1936, Techwood Homes became the first-ever public housing project in the Nation. It was located northwest of Downtown, between the Coca-Cola headquarters and Georgia Tech’s campus. Its construction replaced a de facto integrated low-income neighborhood known as Tanyard Bottom. At the time of its opening, Techwood Homes was established as a “whites only” complex. It would remain this way until white flight infringed on the city after integration was brought on by the civil rights movement. Over the years, federal funding was not properly allocated toward housing projects such as Techwood. As a result, the neighborhood became a blight to the city with failed revitalizations, high crime, and high poverty rates. In 1990, it was announced that the Summer Olympics would be hosted in Atlanta, and thus began the revitalization of poor neighborhoods such as Techwood Homes. Sixty years after its creation, Techwood Homes would be demolished and replaced by a mixed-income housing project called Centennial Place which still stands today. The initial development and then redevelopment of Techwood Homes are both terribly similar as both times business and political leaders sought to replace a blighted neighborhood and, in the process, ended up disproportionately harming some of the city’s most vulnerable communities.

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