Northeast Denver Housing Center

"We use Esri ArcGIS maps to show developers where affordable housing could fit into their plans. We also use mapping to educate lawmakers on how to incentivize developers."

Gete Mekonnen, founder and executive director 

Northeast Denver Housing Center Maps for Impact,
Uses Esri ArcGIS Tech to Demonstrate Housing Needs

The Northeast Denver Housing Center (NDHC) creates sustainable and healthy housing opportunities for under-served households in Denver, Colorado through outreach education and affordable housing development. 

The organization utilizes mapping technology to advocate for its vision of redeveloped neighborhoods that have ample sources of healthy food, recreation, transportation, and child care for residents. 

In 2012, NDHC requested a donation of Esri ArcGIS for Desktop Basic software from and found it so beneficial that it requested another donation in 2014. 

NDHC uses the geographic information system (GIS) mapping software to provide a birds-eye view of a situation on the ground. Via its online training courses, NDHC also educates graduate architecture students on how the software can demonstrate need in housing community development. 

According to Gete Mekonnen, NDHC's founder and executive director, "the mapping technology also allows the organization to demonstrate to funders and city officials our impact in our Healthy Homes Initiative, where we provide home improvement assistance to reduce risk from lead poisoning and asthma triggers in low-income homes." 

But that is not all NDHC is doing with this technology. The nonprofit is now using tech resources to locate affordable housing in new developments and to influence city plans for transit development in low-income areas in addition to several other projects. 

The ESRI mapping technology donation via TechSoup has helped the NDHC effectively convey community needs. This mapping technology allows NDHC to communicate the need for low-income housing in Denver to funders in a simple and clear way.

A version of this story appeared on the TechSoup Blog, written by Jim Lynch, director of green technology, TechSoup.