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New Town is a historical and vibrant neighborhood located on Jacksonville's Northside, immediately northwest of Downtown. New Town was developed in the early 20th century for African-American workers in the railroads and industrial areas to the east, south and west. One of the major anchor institutions in the neighborhood is Edward Waters College, Florida’s oldest historically black college. By the 21st century, the neighborhood began to show considerable signs of urban decay, In 2008, Jacksonville mayor John Peyton and other parties established the New Town Success Zone, modeled after New York City's Harlem Children's Zone, which provides comprehensive social and educational programs and services to children in the neighborhood.
LISC Jacksonville worked closely with Edward Waters College, New Town Success Zone, United Way of Northeast Florida, Lutheran Social Services and Family Foundations to establish Steps 2 Success the first Financial Opportunity Center in Jacksonville and the State of Florida. LISC Jacksonville also is working with community leaders on revitalizing the neighborhood's "once bustling" commercial corridor and with the neighboring Rail Yard District on providing employment opportunities for neighborhood residents.
Today, New Town is beginning to show signs of urban renewal and slowly becoming one of Jacksonville’s up-and-coming neighborhoods.