The Near East Side neighborhood is getting a massive boost. One to the tune of $20 million over the next three years.
Yesterday, Fifth Third Bank announced the project, as well as its intentions to partner with Columbus non-profits Partners Achieving Community Transformation and Enterprise Community Partners for the project.
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The Cincinnati-based banking giant will be committing $180 million overall over the next three years in a national initiative known as the Neighborhood Investment Program. The funds will be spread out across nine different U.S. cities, including three Ohio cities total, Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati. Each city will receive $20 million.
Noting how a number of barriers disproportionately affect Black area residents, the program aims to “[leverage] the neighborhood’s rich cultural legacy and [create] an economic impact corridor.”
The slated list of improvements the project hopes to bring to the area includes the following:
- Develop a Black-owned bank and grocery store
- Support public art creation across the neighborhood
- Provide down-payment support for middle-income and ladder-up housing opportunities that build generational wealth
- Expand health, dental and optometry services
- Create financial education, literacy and savings programs for area youth
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