The Home Owners’ Loan Corporation released its zoning map of Atlanta in 1938. Collectively, the HOLC zoning maps, commonly known as redlining maps, bear partial responsibility for the ongoing neglect of many Black neighborhoods in US cities. The effects of redlining have been a subject of study and discussion for policymakers, advocacy groups, and academics alike for many decades.

Recently, government programs aimed at revitalization have placed a heavy reliance on Opportunity Zones and tax credit incentives programs to boost private sector investment in these areas. The spatial intersection between the HOLC maps and maps of current Opportunity Zones are noticeably similar. This web app highlights the similarity in location of the areas deemed most risky by the HOLC and the areas selected for inclusion in today’s Opportunity Zone programs. It includes recent data on demographics and housing from the American Community Survey as well as identifies spaces where the HOLC zoning maps overlap with contemporary Opportunity Zones.

The map focuses on the City of Atlanta because this and the surrounding Tri-Cities area were included in the historical maps that have been digitized. Other Georgia cities were included in the HOLC zoning maps, including the Augusta and Savannah areas. Pan to these locations to see them as well as Federal Opportunity Zones. Click on the swipe icon in the upper right area of the map to reveal a slider bar that enables direct comparison of two layers.