In one of Louisville's poorest neighborhoods, a formerly abandoned community center is making enormous strides — and even Google has taken note

Business Insider | 6/28/2018 | Richard Feloni
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Google Fiber, Alphabet's high-speed internet provider, built a $25,000 startup incubator within a community center in an overlooked part of Louisville, Kentucky.

The mayor, local entrepreneurs, and national investors have all championed the center, which is called Love City.

Center - Hundreds - Locals - Founders - Neighborhood

The center has catered to hundreds of locals and its founders also opened the neighborhood's only sit-down restaurant.

In a recent investing trip to Louisville, AOL founder Steve Case and "Hillbilly Elegy" author JD Vance said it's an example of how entrepreneurship can benefit struggling communities.

Article - Part - Business - Insider - Series

This article is part of Business Insider's ongoing series on Better Capitalism.

When Shawn Arvin's wife Inga told him that she wanted to move to Portland, all he could think was that it was the neighborhood where he used to buy drugs.


"I surely hope you mean Oregon," he told her.

What he knew, however, was that Inga was referring to the Portland neighborhood in Western Louisville, Kentucky, bordering the Ohio River. It's a neighborhood that's not simply struggling — it's the tenth-poorest neighborhood in the United States, according to a 2016 Brookings Institute study.

Couple - Reputation

But the couple decided it was worth investing in not despite its reputation, but because of it.

That was 2015. Now, after just three years, they have attracted the support of Google Fiber, Alphabet's high-speed internet company, and have been serving hundreds of Portland residents through their community center, Love City.

Chance - Love - City - May - Stop

I had a chance to visit Love City in early May, on the last stop of AOL cofounder Steve Case's seventh Rise of the Rest bus tour, run through his Washington, DC-based venture capital firm, Revolution. During the tour, Case and his team toured five cities in the southeastern part of the US, establishing partnerships and awarding the winner of a daily pitch competition $100,000. JD Vance, a former Silicon Valley investor and the author of "Hillbilly Elegy," oversees...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Business Insider
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