T.I. has always represented for his hometown of Atlanta. While he’s undoubtedly amassed a substantial amount of wealth during the course of his lucrative career, he also funnels it back into his community.
On Wednesday (November 3), T.I. and Tiny took a trip to his old Bankhead neighborhood to scope out his new affordable housing development. According to an Instagram video posted by Tip, the development includes 143 units, a community garden, community center and greenhouse.
“So yeah, checkin’ on my development here in Bankhead, you know what I’m saying?” he says in the clip. “Right here used to be the old K-Mart … now we got affordable housing … 143 units going up, mixed-use community, you dig? We about 40 percent done. We supposed to be done sometime next year.
“Since everybody’s from here, what you done did for here? I ain’t finna do a whole bunch jaw-jacking. I’m gonna show mine. But, you know, this is our first project as developers. We’re proud of it.”
He adds toward the end, “Don’t look at me. Look at my work. Look at my moves. Shit, we can kill all the cap.”
T.I. has already invested millions of dollars into his Atlanta community. In October 2020, he encouraged his 13.2 million Instagram followers to ditch the Cartier watches and Louis Vuitton gear to invest in property instead.
Speaking to HipHopDX at the time, the platinum-selling rapper revealed he shared the post not long after speaking to two different employees at Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue in Atlanta, which both sell luxury brands such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Prada.
“I do — what do you call it? Human experiments, social experiments and stuff like that; just looking and monitoring,” he said. “Do you ever people watch? Like just go somewhere and just recreationally sit there and wonder what they’re up to? Over the last few weeks, the malls, the stores are flooded. The person that I work with at Neiman Marcus, and the people that I know at Saks … the Neiman Marcus is at a huge mall called Lenox and Saks is at a smaller boutique, but more expensive mall called Phipps Plaza. They’re adjacent to one another, right across the street.
“So my Saks person told me we can’t keep nothing in here, we’ve been doing over a $100,000 dollars a day since those unemployment checks and all this, the stimulus stuff and that. And we can’t keep nothing in stock. Same thing for the Louis Vuitton store. Same thing for the Gucci store … I seen when Boosie caught people lined up all the way around the corner in the mall, just to spend money that was given for a purpose that could’ve been used for so many different thing.”
Tip has spent over $2.7 million since 2017 to buy six properties and plots of land in his old Center Hill neighborhood as part of his Buy Back The Block initiative.
“You can do well and do good at the same time,” he added. “You don’t have be a slumlord in order to make money. You don’t have to be a poor person in order to give back. I believe that the best way to help people in need in the community is to not become one. I am in the for-profit business.
“Philanthropy is something I do because I like to do it. But when my money goes somewhere and I invest into a community, I’m doing that to make money — don’t get me wrong. But the money that I make gives me a strength and freedom to invest more into the community.”
As Tip noted, the housing development is expected to be completed sometime in 2022. Check out the clip above.