Nestled next to Interstate 285, Avondale Estates, and North Decatur, the DeKalb County community of Scottdale has brandished the tagline “Atlanta’s next success story” for years, and recent changes are helping validate that claim.
In the late 1800s, Scottdale grew around a cotton mill founded by George Washington Scott, the community’s namesake and a benefactor of nearby Agnes Scott College. The oldest remaining bungalows were built for millworkers, but when the factory shut down in 1982, philanthropist Tobie Grant stepped in to donate 55 acres to help the unemployed, creating a community within the community. That neighborly spirit persists for the roughly 11,000 people that call burgeoning, but under-the-radar, Scottdale home today.
Beyond the old bungalows, Scottdale offers a growing stock of more recent, neo-Craftsman houses and even newer large homes with a farmhouse bent. Prices for larger dwellings have nudged over a half-million dollars in some cases, but those are still about $350,000 cheaper than similar houses in Decatur.
Who lives here?
Emory University doctors, CDC employees, and television personalities live alongside mechanics and shopkeepers.
The PATH Foundation trail cuts through Scottdale, providing a bicycling link to both Stone Mountain and downtown Atlanta. Hundreds of new condo and apartment options have sprouted recently, and plans call for modern-style townhomes to break ground this spring. But Scottdale is probably best known for its retail destinations, including Your DeKalb Farmers Market (which is undergoing a major expansion) and the sprawling original location of Kudzu Antiques.
New-construction homes provide relatively cheap options for ITP buyers, but gentrification is an issue. The area could use more walkable retail, too.
“When we were growing up in Scottdale, child, somebody was getting busted every Friday and Saturday night—it was a rough place! It’s really changed a lot. All the riffraff and—excuse me for saying it like this—the low-lifes are gone. It’s a beautiful place to live now, with a lot of beautiful houses.”
— Retired blues singer Lillie Barber, 71, regarded as a historian of Scottdale, where her family traces back several generations
Crime (Annual odds of becoming a victim in the Scottdale neighborhood as defined by NeighborhoodScout.com)
Violent crime: 1 in 101
Property crime: 1 in 19
Georgia School Grade
Druid Hills High School: C
Crime ratings by NeighborhoodScout.com are based on data collected from more than 18,000 local law enforcement agencies and coded by location. NeighborhoodScout.com is the most widely used neighborhood search engine in the world. It is owned by Location Inc., a leading builder and source of location-based data and tools for businesses and consumers nationwide. NeighborhoodScout areas are based on Census tracts and don’t always exactly mirror neighborhood boundaries.
School grades were provided by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement. The office’s Georgia School Grades Reports include “A-F letter grades based on school performance and other useful information about the school, such as performance on statewide assessments, the makeup of the school’s student body, the graduation rate, and additional academic information.” schoolgrades.georgia.gov
This article originally appeared in our February 2018 issue.