Housing in Atlanta

In the Mix: Middle Housing and Income Diversity in Atlanta

In the Mix: Middle Housing and Income Diversity in Atlanta

The following information is based on an applied research paper by Caledonia Orsini (MCRP '20). Applied research papers are completed by MCRP students as practice-oriented alternatives to theses. These papers utilize practical skills and draw conclusions related to professional planning practice.

This study explores a correlation between Atlanta’s modest supply of middle housing (often referred to as “missing middle”), and income diversity among residents. While Atlanta has historically been one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the country, it also leads the country in income inequality and is severely spatially segregated. Integrating more middle housing is one step towards a more equitable city.

Regression Analysis

Two maps displaying regression analysis

A multiple regression analysis was conducted to examine the relationship between levels of income diversity and the percent of middle housing in Atlanta block groups. These variables were significantly and positively correlated, indicating that the more middle housing a neighborhood has, the greater its level of income diversity.

Policy Implications

If neighborhoods that reflect their city’s income diversity ensure that residents receive more equitable services, then this research suggests that a variety of housing choice can promote this equity. Hopefully this can provide a contextual component to potential policy measures regarding upzoning, allowing smaller minimum lot sizes, and modifying residential parking requirements. Atlanta has already made significant changes in the last decade to its zoning, moving towards adopting a form-based code that allows for more flexible mixed-use development based on neighborhoods’ existing conditions.

More Information on Missing Middle and Income Diversity

Missing Middle Housing - Daniel Parolek

Kronberg Urbanists + Architects

The Opportunity Atlas

Safety Net Questions


If you can't find the information you were looking for, we'll get you to the right place.
Contact Us