CHOSEWOOD PARK NEIGHBORHOOD
HistoryChosewood Park was primarily work force housing for the United States Penitentiary, Atlanta, established in 1902. Between 1927 and 1990, the workers at the Lakewood Assemblyplant operated by General Motors populated the neighborhood. In the late 2000s, Chosewood Park neighborhood experienced a surge in interest as close-in neighborhoods gained in popularity. Several large developments were planned around the periphery of the neighborhood including the Village at Chosewood Park (planned for the Lakewood Assembly site), and Cityview @ Englewood between the single family area and the Atlanta BeltLine. These were in the approval process when the United States housing bubble stopped progress on the projects and the wave of foreclosures that swept the U.S. hit Chosewood early and hard.
By 2008 approximately 24% of the housing stock in the neighborhood was vacant, most having been scavenged of all items of any value. By the end of 2008 houses were selling for less than $9,000. This was not uncommon on the south side of Atlanta.
As part of the Atlanta Housing Authority plan to Demolished public housing projects in Atlanta Englewood Manor was razed in 2009.
City BeltLine projects in the neighborhood include "Phase I opened ... in fall 2011, and it is an illustration of how the Atlanta BeltLine vision is taking hold in areas that had fallen into disuse and been neglected over time. Blighted industrial land along Boulevard south of Grant Park has been transformed into five acres of glorious greenspace featuring two large multiuse activity fields. "
By the end of 2012 more than 60% of the dilapidated or vacant houses were renovated. Property crime and violent crime are rare within the neighborhood, though the periphery experiences a significant number along the arterial streets bounding the neighborhood.
Chosewood Park is the pilot site for Edible Neighborhood. In February 2013 two dozen fruit and nut trees were planted along the sidewalks of Chosewood Park. This was the beginning of the pilot project. The trees were followed by hundreds of edible flowers planted in the sidewalk strips. In March 2013 three dozen herbs were planted: rosemary, oregano, thyme. All planted along the sidewalks and curbsides of Chosewood, available to everyone to take a snip for cooking. The following winter saw the planting of blueberries, raspberries, grapes, and figs along the sidewalks. In February 2017 another planting of 2 dozen apple, plum, pear, persimmon, and fig trees was provided for all neighbors who want to host a fruit tree for the neighborhood.
Edible Neighborhood, a program to encourage community building, local food, and celebration of "permanent" plantings, began with this neighborhood project.