NORTH FULTON, Ga. – Ask any city planner or urban developer what an important ingredient of city life might be, and they will likely say a diverse and vibrant population, which includes a healthy dose of young people.
This is a problem for the cities of North Fulton. Housing prices are often too expensive for those just climbing the employment ladder to afford to live in the area, instead driving a population that ranges from middle age to retirement. Add to that the dormant status of many areas after 10 p.m., and young people would rather live and play closer to Atlanta, even though they might work north of the river.
The North Fulton Alliance of Young Professionals (NFAYP) hopes to change that.
Hans Appen, who was the youngest candidate running for Alpharetta city office last November, said the idea for an association for young professionals came to him during the campaign.
“I heard about all sorts of issues except strengthening the young labor force in North Fulton,” Appen said. “As the ‘young’ candidate, I thought that this was an issue.”
Appen said he hopes the group will help its members by enhancing their skills through job training, political advocacy and awareness, as well as community service projects. It’s also a good way to network.
“You don’t often hear too much about [the younger population],” Appen said. “People are too often caught up in the problems of today when they should be paying more attention in establishing a bright future for North Fulton.”
And he said the youth are that future.
The sheer amount of universities and technology companies in and around North Fulton shows that there is a large, young and well-educated workforce in the area. And those people would likely want to live in the area they work.
“The jobs are here,” he said. “By establishing a vibrant lifestyle [in North Fulton] we can make it not just a place where young people come to work.”
For more information on the NFAYP and its future meetings, visit them online at www.nfayp.com.