A local arts group moved into an abandoned factory. What does it mean for the surrounding neighborhood?

Nearly a quarter of the homes in the Franklinton neighborhood of Columbus, Ohio are vacant. In 2011, an arts group moved into an abandoned factory in the area to create 400 West Rich Street, a community that now leases space to woodworkers, performance artists, a coffee shop, painters, sculptors, and others.

This short documentary considers the artists who work in 400 West Rich Street, why the space attracted them, and what it means for revitalization of the neighborhood. "We have the opportunity to do what people would call gentrification, only without the negative component of it … the displacement of an existing population," says Jim Sweeney, director of the Franklinton Development Asssociation. "The existing population is gone already. They went decades ago."

This documentary is the first of three produced for American Futures, an ongoing reporting project from James and Deborah Fallows.

This post originally appeared on The Atlantic.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Bicycle riders on a package-blocked bicycle lane
    Perspective

    Why Do Micromobility Advocates Have Tiny-Demand Syndrome?

    In the 1930s big auto dreamed up freeways and demanded massive car infrastructure. Micromobility needs its own Futurama—one where cars are marginalized.

  2. a photo of Extinction Rebellion climate change protesters in London
    Environment

    When Climate Activists Target Public Transit

    The climate protest movement Extinction Rebellion is facing a backlash after disrupting commuters on the London Underground.

  3. A photo of an abandoned building in Providence, Rhode Island.
    Perspective

    There's No Such Thing as a Dangerous Neighborhood

    Most serious urban violence is concentrated among less than 1 percent of a city’s population. So why are we still criminalizing whole areas?

  4. Life

    Why Do Instagram Playgrounds Keep Calling Themselves Museums?

    The bustling industry of immersive, Instagram-friendly experiences has put a new spin on the word museum.

  5. A photo of a police officer in El Paso, Texas.
    Equity

    What New Research Says About Race and Police Shootings

    Two new studies have revived the long-running debate over how police respond to white criminal suspects versus African Americans.

×