Capital Impact Partners Launches Free Training Program for Atlanta’s Emerging Real Estate Developers

The Equitable Development Initiative helps developers who are focused on bringing affordable housing and other real estate projects to disinvested communities.

June 17, 2024 (Atlanta, GA) – A new program will help Atlanta’s emerging real estate developers overcome the systemic obstacles that have prevented them from being more involved in the region’s booming real estate market — and, in turn, to bring more affordable housing and other real estate projects to disinvested communities.  

The Equitable Development Initiative is a free nine-month program led by Capital Impact Partners. Since 2018, the program has trained more than 250 real estate developers in five metropolitan areas throughout the United States. The Atlanta region will become the sixth.

The Equitable Development Initiative provides emerging developers with the tools they need to grow their businesses — including training, technical assistance, mentorship, networking, and potential pathways for financing.

“The Equitable Development Initiative is designed to help developers who are working to develop disinvested communities for the betterment of their residents. Many of these developers have been held back by not having access to the financial capital, social capital, and knowledge capital that other developers have,” said Ellis Carr, president and CEO of Capital Impact Partners and CDC Small Business Finance, two nonprofit mission-driven lenders that are part of the Momentus Capital branded family of organizations.

“Empowering developers is important everywhere, including in the Atlanta metropolitan area, where continued growth is being accompanied by skyrocketing housing prices and an even greater need for more housing throughout the spectrum of affordability,” Mr. Carr said. “We are proud to join in with the many local stakeholders who have been working to ensure that everyone in Atlanta has the opportunities they deserve in order to thrive.”

Applicants must be emerging developers seeking to develop real estate in — and preferably also live in — the city of Atlanta or Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fulton, or Gwinnett counties. For more information, applicants should visit the Equitable Development Initiative website.

The application deadline is July 10, 2024.

A Need for More Affordable Housing Units in Atlanta

From 2010 to 2020, more than 800,000 people moved to the Atlanta region, according to the Bipartisan Policy Center’s J. Ronald Terwilliger Center for Housing Policy. Home prices in Atlanta’s five-county core have increased by 73% since 2017, ​​according to a study by KB Advisory Group and Urban Land Institute Atlanta (PDF). Rent prices have also increased significantly, by 33%, and the five-county region has lost 130,000 units that had been priced at less than $1,000 per month. 

All of this has also made it more difficult for people living with low-to-moderate incomes to find housing, especially when they do not qualify for subsidies. And the increase in housing costs has also made it more expensive for the region’s residents to travel between their jobs and where they can afford to live. These increases in housing and transportation costs have particularly impacted communities that were already disinvested and in need of more opportunities.

How the Equitable Development Initiative Can Help

The Equitable Development Initiative is modeled after the successful program that Capital Impact Partners launched in Detroit in 2018. It has since expanded into several other regions facing similar situations, including Washington, D.C.; the San Francisco Bay Area; Dallas; and Cleveland. 

Capital Impact Partners also hosted a similar program in Austin called the Small Developer Training and has run other programs for more experienced developers.

Graduates of these programs have gone on to create important projects for their communities. For example, Edward Carrington, a graduate of the Detroit program, is building The Ribbon, a mixed-use building with one commercial unit and 18 affordable residential units; and Ayesha Hudson, a graduate of the D.C.-area program, recently created nine new affordable housing units and preserved four existing affordable housing units.

“The Equitable Development Initiative gave me a good foundation for how to do commercial real estate development,” said Ms. Hudson. “It opened doors for me, gave me instant access to an expanded network that would have taken much longer to build on my own, and accelerated my path forward.”

Historically, the real estate industry has been dominated by larger national and global firms. Helping Atlanta’s emerging real estate developers play a greater role not only helps them grow their businesses, but these developers are also often more focused on creating more affordable housing and adding mixed-use projects to historically disinvested areas. 

In Atlanta, the Equitable Development Initiative has been specifically crafted to confront the top challenges real estate developers face in the region. 

Developers will receive broad-based training — in areas such as obtaining funding, project budgeting, project and contractor management, site selection, sustainability, legal services, and community engagement — as well as local mentorship and network building. The curriculum will also include discussions about infill housing, missing middle housing, and transit-oriented development.

Program speakers will include representatives from government agencies as well as organizations that are seeking to create more opportunities for Atlanta’s disinvested communities. 

And Equitable Development Initiative participants will be connected with experienced real estate developers from Atlanta — including Leonard Adams, Daniel Alexander, Cassius Coleman, Joel Dixon, Darion Dunn, Sharon Guest, Cherie Ong, and Rod Teachy — who will serve as mentors or presenters. 


About Capital Impact Partners

Capital Impact Partners is transforming how capital and investments flow into communities to provide people access to the capital and opportunities they deserve. We work to champion key issues of equity and social and economic justice by deploying mission-driven financing, capacity-building programs, and impact investing opportunities.

A nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution, Capital Impact Partners has disbursed more than $3 billion since 1982 to create access to critical social services, grow entrepreneurs, and create quality jobs. Capital Impact Partners’ leadership in delivering financial and social impact has resulted in the organization being rated by S&P Global and Fitch, and recognized by Aeris for its performance.

About the Momentus Capital Brand

The Momentus Capital branded family of organizations refers to the combined operations of Capital Impact Partners and CDC Small Business Finance, as well as their affiliates, Momentus Direct Capital, Momentus Securities (a FINRA-member broker/dealer), and Ventures Lending Technologies. While each organization under the Momentus Capital brand still operates as a separate entity, their clients will now have access to more resources and products.

The Momentus Capital branded family of organizations is transforming how capital and investments flow into communities to provide people access to the capital and opportunities they deserve. We are working to reinvent traditional financial systems that have failed to address systemic issues of inequality, economic empowerment, and the widening racial wealth gap by offering a continuum of financial, knowledge, and social capital to help local leaders build inclusive and equitable communities and create generational wealth. This includes a comprehensive package of loan products, impact investment opportunities, training and business advising programs, and technology services that advance locally-led solutions.

Leveraging 80 years of combined experience, more than $3 billion in assets under management, and strong community engagement, we have delivered $24 billion in financing, created and preserved 293,000 jobs, and served 13,800 small businesses and five and a half million people across their history.

With headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, and San Diego, California, Momentus Capital operates nationally with a focus on larger urban areas and cities in Arizona, the Atlanta region, California, Michigan, Nevada, New York, Texas, and the Washington metro area.

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