T.I., Atlanta mayor cut ribbon on new affordable housing complex


More Atlanta families have access to affordable housing. On Tuesday, Atlanta rapper T.I., Mayor Andre Dickens, and a variety of other groups unveiled 140 units at the Intrada Building on Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway.

“When you listen to Tip’s album… he shouts out all the neighborhoods right around here,” Mayor Dickens said.

“I’m going to tell y’all a secret. Don’t tell nobody. I got caught stealing from this Kmart,” T.I. said, while laughing, referencing a store that stood in the neighborhood. “I thought that, you know, just to offset the shame that came with that, it would behoove me to invest in the community by acquiring these properties.”

“The Rubber Band Man” is talking about his investment in this brand-new building on Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway. He’s not the only one who knows this area well.

The mayor and rapper say the community is a partnership with the city of Atlanta, T.I.’s “Briarhouse Holdings,” and the Vecino group. Tip says he was inspired by fellow West Side-native Killer Mike.

“He says, ‘If everyone does a little, no one has to do a lot,'” T.I. said.

Since 2017, several organizations have thrown their resources together to make a safe space for families who’ve floundered financially. According to RentCafe, the average Atlanta rent is more than $1,800. And with a ZipRecruiter poll showing the average person makes $34.21 an hour, it’s clear why there’s such an emphasis on creating affordable homes.

“Safe, quality, affordable housing is linked to what we value,” the mayor said. “It’s not something a government can fix on its own.”

The idea is to build, and, even better, a community by “buying back the block.”

In the past two years, the mayor says the city has created 3,200 affordable homes, with another 5,000 under construction. The mayor says his goal is to set aside 20,000 affordable housing units.

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