Posted by on Apr 15, 2014 in News |

The Community Improvement Fund Application deadline has been extended.

All applications are due to Invest Atlanta on Wednesday, May 14, 2014 no later than 5:00pm

Invest Atlanta:  133 Peachtree Street, Ste 2900 Atlanta GA 30303, 404-880-8100

Download application HERE

The Fund will invest in projects that result in lasting impact over a generation. Preference will be given to projects that: demonstrate understanding of the overall needs of the community and are part of a cohesive plan; accelerate quality of life improvements; leverage other public and private funding sources; and attract new investment, jobs and residents.

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Snake Nation Arts Festival + Artstroll, Mar 14 and 15

Posted by on Mar 3, 2014 in News |

snake_nation 2014The Snake Nation Arts Festival is a collaboration between the Castleberry Hill Creative/Historic District and PushPush Theater. The inaugural 2014 fest will be held on March 14 & 15. Voted best Art Stroll in the city,the Castleberry Hill 2nd Friday Art Stroll will be held on Friday the 14th from 7pm-10pm followed by the Festival on Saturday the 15th from 12-6.

We will fill the neighborhood with live music, interactive art, video shoots, dance troupes, artists markets, more live music, walking gallery tours, historic tours, movie tours, the filming of a new series by PushPush, and much more…!



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Community Benefits Plan

Posted by on Dec 3, 2013 in News |

The Community Benefits Plan

Yesterday the Atlanta City Council voted to approve the final Community Benefits Plan.  This is the outcome of 9 months of work which began at City Council in March of 2013 where we were included as part of legislation creating the Community Benefits Plan.  The attached Infographic CHNA INFOGRAPHIC gives insight to the actions since that date.

The full Community Benefits Plan is available at this link but may have minor tweaks after this version which is marked final

You may have questions about “next steps” in the process.  The following answers are based on responses provided in Public Meetings and Public Documents.  These are being provided to the Neighborhood and the New Board Members in an effort to provide a smooth transition as they undertake the next steps in this matter.

Which neighborhoods are covered under the Community Benefits Plan?

Vine City, English Avenue, Castleberry Hill, Marietta Street Artery and Downtown

How much money is available?

There is $15 Million allocated from the Westside TAD (Tax Allocation District) and $15 Million from the Neighborhood Prosperity Fund (Blank Foundation)

What’s the Difference in the two funds?

Westside TAD dollars must be spent on what is commonly known as “sticks and bricks” or capital projects within the Westside TAD boundaries.  See Invest Atlanta reference document to this fund here

The Blank Foundation dollars are to be allocated per the direction of their board and are typically supportive of more “soft skills” type needs .

Example:  A health center is acquired for the neighborhood (funding by Westside TAD) and needs ongoing staffing (Blank Foundation).

Can the Westside TAD be expanded?

Please look to community leaders to undertake any measures to expand the Westside TAD.

That’s not a lot of money for a new stadium.

The original amount of dollars has never changed.  The City is looking for these dollars to be “leveraged” or increased through additional public/private partnerships.

What specific Castleberrry Hill Projects are included in the final Community Benefits Plan?

No specific projects are included for any neighborhood in the final document.  General project ideas  like these are included:  Development of Commercial Districts, Development that Activates Area Adjacent to NSP, Improved Transportation Connectivity, Promotion of Hospitality Industry) are cited in the agreement (available at link listed above)

How do will specific projects get funded?

Applications will need to be made to either the Blank Foundation or Invest Atlanta in a process that will be published early in 2014.  Those projects that fit the general priorities of the Community Benefits Agreement and lie within the neighborhood may be put forward on a competitive basis with other neighborhoods requesting funding for their projects.

How long will it take?

The public comments from Invest Atlanta at the last Transportation Committee meeting suggested that applications will be accepted for around 3 months and then funding will begin within the next three months.

Will everything be funded right away?

No.  Public comments from Invest Atlanta suggest at this time that there will be three rounds of funding taking up to 36 months.

Do I have to have a non-profit for 501c3 to apply?

No.  Not for Westside TAD development (sticks and bricks) type projects.  (see guidelines at link above)

Yes. For Blank Foundation “social” type projects.

I just started a 501c3 but I don’t have my paperwork back from the IRS yet.  Can I apply?

According to public comments and grant guideline information distributed as part of the Community Benefit Plan process, the 501c3 must have been in existence for more than a year.

I don’t know how to write a grant.  Can I get some help?

Yes. The Community Benefits Plan provides for grant resources (up to 40 hours at $50.00 per hour) for approved resources.  The applicant will need to pay a $100 application fee and choose from the resource list.

What improves the chances of a project being funded? 

Sustainability.  Projects requiring an initial injection of cash that demonstrates a move towards self-funding and sustainability over a period of time.

Proven Track Record.  Those with a 501c3 or for profit entities with a track record of success (including multiple years of tax filings) will have the greatest opportunity for being funded.

Partnerships.  Partnering with non-profit groups already doing engaged in Castleberry Hill could be a powerful way to demonstrate a track record and/or sustainability.  Examples for Castleberry Hill might include:  Atlanta Historical Preservation Society or Flux

Leverage.   Projects that have leverage means they have dollars derived from multiple sources and the financial request from one of the two funds is only part of the funding.

What about developers?

Developers that have projects to propose for the community should have additional funding available (private capital of their own and/or lending set up) for their projects.

Example:  Someone wants to take a vacant lot and put mixed development on it.  They should be prepared to demonstrate the project needs about 20-30% from the Westside TAD and has 70 to 80% of their funding otherwise secured.  This creates the “leverage” for bringing additional funds to the community.

Where do I get more information?

Visit the Invest Atlanta website and look to your elected community leaders to educate the neighborhood and provide updates as they become available.


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Historic Landmark District

Posted by on Feb 17, 2013 in Slider | 0 comments

Castleberry Hill is a historic creative neighborhood in Downtown Atlanta located adjacent to and southwest of the Central Business District and GA Dome/GWCC complex. Bordered by MLK Jr. Dr, Spring St, Whitehall and Northside Dr, it is a federally recognized historic district since 1985 and became a City of Atlanta Landmark District, the 8th such designation, in 2006. A designated ‘landmark’ district’ helps preserve the neighborhood from overzealous developers.

This area was originally part of the renegade Snake Nation community but by the Civil War was becoming industrial with terra cotta and other building material factories, cotton warehousing and grocers, one of whom, Daniel Castleberry, it is named for. By the early 1900s it had fallen on hard times where it remained until the 1980s where it was the backdrop for dystopic films such as Freejack and Kalifornia. Additionally, Driving Miss Daisy was filmed in the neighborhood as well as the Farrelly Brothers comedy Hall Pass, The Walking Dead and many Tyler Perry films. Production companies often choose Castleberry Hill as a backdrop due to the historic quality and New York-style loft living. Loft conversions began in the 80s and by 1992 there were 120 lofts with 150 residents, the 1996 Olympics saw another influx of development. The population has grown considerably since then.

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