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ARC Seeks Applications for 2021 Livable Centers Initiative and Community Development Assistance Program

Atlanta — Jan 19, 2021

The Atlanta Regional Commission is now accepting applications for two local planning programs: the Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) and the Community Development Assistance Program (CDAP).

Since 2000, the LCI grant program has helped 127 communities throughout the Atlanta region re-envision their downtowns and transit nodes as vibrant, walkable places with increased mobility options. CDAP provides technical assistance to local governments to improve quality-of-life in their communities by improving access to resources such as healthy food, affordable housing and employment opportunities.

The LCI program seeks applications for projects that advance creative placemaking, affordable housing, green infrastructure, and smart city technology. ARC will also assist communities in developing project plans to address those in a future LCI study.

And new this year is a pilot program to fund applicants that focus on creative placemaking around bus stops within LCI areas to promote safety, accessibility, and transit ridership.

CDAP is seeking applications for projects that focus on one or more of the following priority areas: Lifelong communities, historic preservation, green infrastructure, access to healthy food, affordable housing, workforce development, smart communities, and creative placemaking. New this year is a focus on social equity and community resiliency.

“Great communities don’t happen by accident. Careful planning is required to foster places that offer all residents a great quality of life and opportunities to thrive,” and Sam Shenbaga, manager of ARC’s Community Development Group.

The application period for both grants closes on February 26, 2021. For more information and to apply, visit

About the Livable Centers Initiative

For more than two decades, the Livable Centers Initiative has helped transform communities across the region, including City Springs in the City of Sandy Springs, the City of Jonesboro, and the City of Decatur. In 2020, the ARC awarded $1.4 million to fund projects in 11 metro Atlanta communities including Villa Rica, the Town of Tyrone, and the City of Woodstock to increase mobility options, encourage healthy lifestyles and provide improved access to jobs and services.

This year, ARC is able to award up to $1.8 million in LCI grants. ARC pays up to 80% of each study amount, with a 20% local match. Applicants must be a local government, transit agency, or CID, and contain a multi-model transportation nexus.

Once communities complete their LCI plans, they are eligible for federal funding to support projects such as sidewalks, multi-use trails and intersection improvements.

About the Community Development Assistance Program

CDAP provides direct technical assistance to local governments, CIDs, and nonprofits. The program prioritizes projects that focus on lifelong communities, historic preservation, green infrastructure, access to healthy food, affordable housing, workforce development, smart communities, and creative placemaking. Staff-led assistance is the cornerstone of CDAP, although a limited number of grants may be awarded through the program. Examples of CDAP projects include:

  • Planning – Community-driven and long-range planning assistance to guide neighborhood-wide, sub-regional and county level decision-making.
  • Implementation – Strategic assistance to implement high-priority action items identified in adopted plans.
  • Training – Structured education and awareness programs to help a diversity of decision-makers.
  • Facilitation – Consensus-building activities to help stakeholders achieve desired outcomes for a given program or project.

Past CDAP studies include the Washington Road Pedestrian Safety Study, Historic Preservation as an Economic Tool for the City of Lithonia, and the Old Fourth Ward Visioning Study.

The Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) is the official planning agency for the 10-county Atlanta Region, including Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, and Rockdale counties as well as the City of Atlanta and 73 other cities. The Atlanta Regional Commission serves as a catalyst for regional progress by focusing leadership, attention and planning resources on key regional issues.


Contact Name: Paul Donsky
Contact Phone: 404-202-4662
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