Five economically depressed communities will get extra help from the federal government to improve housing, education and jobs.
They are the first "promise zones" chosen under a new White House initiative as President Obama marks the 50th anniversary of President Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty.
The first five promise zones are San Antonio, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, southeastern Kentucky and the Choctaw nation of Oklahoma.
The president first introduced this idea during his state of the union address last year.
Lawmakers from both parties are already embracing the idea.
"We’re encouraged that the president is finally, finally focused on a concrete approach to jobs that members of both parties can support," said Senator Mitch McConnell.
The five promise zones announced Thursday are the first of 20 communities that will be designated over the next 3 years.