Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency | The Nashville Promise Zone
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                         The Nashville Promise Zone

                         Building a Better Nashville for All Communities


The mission of the Nashville Promise Zone (NPZ) is to foster intensive partnerships among Nashville’s organizations that serve high poverty neighborhoods, improve the collective impact of their service and address revitalization in a collaborative way.

In 2016, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded Nashville with a Promise Zone designation. This designation provides 10 years of support including priority access to federal investments in six subzones that further communities’ strategic plans, a federal liaison to help local leaders navigate federal resources and several full-time AmericCorps VISTA members to strengthen the capacity of the Promise Zone initiatives.

The NPZ is a federally designated area that comprises 46-square miles, including the neighborhoods just south, east and north of Nashville’s central business district.


The NPZ is an Area of Service

The NPZ operates with the combined efforts of more than 150 supporting partners, and are broken into six subzones, each with its own captain.

Subzone 1 Captain: Martha O’Bryan Center
Subzone 2 Captain: Edgehill Neighborhood Partnership
Subzone 3 Captain: Woodbine Community Organization
Subzone 4 Captain: Conexión Américas
Subzone 5 Captain: Urban League of Middle Tennessee
Subzone 6 Captain: St. Luke’s Community House

These subzone captains and the more than 150 supporting partners from government, local institutions, nonprofits and community organizations work together, with the help of federal resources, to provide needed resources in each subzone.

The NPZ is an Area of Opportunity

The NPZ partners address six primary goals:

  • Increase access to quality affordable housing
  • Create jobs
  • Increase economic activity
  • Improve educational opportunities
  • Improve community infrastructure
  • Reduce violent crime

The NPZ is an Area of Need

The NPZ represents a quarter of the county’s overall violent crimes, including nearly half of its homicides and a third of its robberies. And overall, the NPZ reports a poverty rate of 37.61%. NPZ residents face low post-secondary education levels, as well as infrastructure and safety concerns that make upward mobility, affordable housing and employment more difficult to obtain.

Through the Promise Zone and the AmeriCorps VISTA programming, local organizations have received $7 million in grant funding and have formed workgroups to collaborate on areas such as education, employment and housing.  Need Access to The Nashville Promise Zone Resource Guide? Click HERE

Affordable Housing Workgroup Focus: Preserve and increase access to affordable housing options for residents of the NPZ

  • Action Step 1:  Partner with housing counseling agencies to provide up to 300 hours of housing counseling education to residents within the NPZ by December 2021.
  • Action Step 2: Track pending housing evictions by zip code within the NPZ and connect residents to appropriate housing agencies and tools (HOME Repair Programs, L.E.G.A.C.Y Program, Weatherization Program) through community engagement opportunities.
  • Action Step 3: Collaborate on Grant applications as a workgroup.

Crime and Education Workgroup Focus: Decrease violent crime within the NPZ and ensure children (Pre-k to 12th grade) have quality early childhood experiences

  • Action Step 1: Track and share reports on crime hotspots, test scores, graduation rates and student attendance within the NPZ.
  • Action Step 2: Connect 100 NPZ residents between the ages of 17 to 24  to community organizations that provide mentorship and continuing education opportunities by December 2021.
  • Action Step 3: Collaborate on Grant applications as a workgroup.

Infrastructure Workgroup Focus: Increase access and awareness of COVID-19 resources in transit challenged communities within the NPZ.

  • Action Step 1: Track vaccination rates in transit-challenged communities and partner with community agencies to provide four community engagement events to connect NPZ residents to COVID-19 tools or educational content by December 2021.
  • Action Step 2: Help build the capacity of transit organizations and efforts that support families and individuals in the NPZ.
  • Action Step 3: Collaborate on Grant applications as a workgroup.

Jobs and Economic Development Workgroup Focus: Support NPZ residents age 16 and older as they pursue degrees or certifications above a high school diploma that enable them to obtain middle-skill jobs and increase economic activity in the community

  • Action Step 1: Connect 100 NPZ residents between the ages of 18 to 45 to workforce training opportunities, programs and tools.
  • Action Step 2: Track unemployment hotspots and report the number of new employment certifications given to NPZ residents by community organizations.
  • Action Step 3: Collaborate on Grant applications as a workgroup.

If you would like more information regarding the workgroups, or how your company organization can join and get involved with the NPZ, email MDHA Special Project Manager Brian Sexton at