(Washington, DC) – The DC Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) announced today that it has awarded six District-owned properties in Historic Anacostia in Ward 8 to two experienced, non-profit organizations for the development of family-style affordable housing units.
“We’ve promised the Historic Anacostia community that we will work aggressively to put vacant and blighted properties into productive use. Residents and DHCD agree that the best way to achieve these goals is through a competitive bidding process that is clear, transparent and equitable,” said DHCD Director Polly Donaldson. “We’ve made good on that promise, and are pleased that we have completed a major step in transforming these long-standing properties into affordable housing for Ward 8 residents.”
DHCD has awarded two vacant lots located at 1528 W Street SE and 1926 15th Street SE to Mi Casa, a nonprofit affordable housing developer, which will build a single family home on each lot for households earning no more than 50 percent of the area median income (AMI).
DHCD has also awarded four buildings to the Development Corporation of Columbia Heights (DCCH), a nonprofit community development corporation, which will rehabilitate four properties into five single family homes located at 1220 Maple View Place SE, 1648 U Street SE, 1518 W Street SE and 1326 Valley Place SE. Two houses will be available to households earning less than 50 percent of AMI; the others for households earning less than 80 percent of AMI.
In November 2016, DHCD released its solicitation for offers to build single-family homes in Historic Anacostia that promoted the provision of family-style affordable housing, made a commitment to long-term affordability and eliminated of blight. Overall, every vacant and blighted property in DCHD’s inventory will be in the process of transformation into affordable housing and mixed use communities by the end of 2017.
Mi Casa has completed more than 500 affordable housing units since it was founded in 1992. Completed projects include:
- The Genesis Project in Brightwood in Ward 4: New construction rental housing developed as an intergenerational intentional community for low income individuals and families.
- Ivy City Special Demonstration Project in Ward 5: This two-phase project included renovation of eight condos and construction of seven new single-family homes.
- Crestwood Cooperative in Ward 1: Helped Latino and senior tenants purchase and rehabilitate their building under the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA).
DCCH has delivered more than 131 units of affordable housing for low and moderate-income families since its first project in 1991. Completed projects in Columbia Heights include:
- DC Pool Project: The District’s first non-contiguous FHA-insured tax credit/tax exempt project developed by a non-profit organization provided 32 affordable housing units for low and moderate-income households.
- Fairmont Square Apartments: The building was purchased at a public auction to prevent displacement of low-income and elderly neighborhood residents.
- Commercial projects: The 18,000 square foot Nehemiah Retail Center, the 29,000 square foot headquarters for the Latin American Youth Center; the transformation of the dilapidated Tivoli Theater into the mixed-use Tivoli Square; and the 500,000 square foot DC USA retail complex, which houses retailers such as Target and Best Buy, as well as local businesses.
Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the next affordable housing steps in her inclusive prosperity platform as part of her March 30 State-of-the-District address. She will once again invest an unprecedented $100 million in the HPTF. She is launching a new initiative: $10 million dedicated solely to a new private-public housing preservation fund.
Since taking office, Mayor Muriel Bowser has made affordable housing a major focus of her administration. In October, the mayor celebrated a record Housing Production Trust Fund (HPTF) investment for FY 2016: $106.3 million supporting 19 projects that will produce or preserve more than 1,200 affordable housing units across the city. And in the first five months of FY 2017, one half of the HPTF is already allocated to projects that will produce and preserve affordable housing across the District. DC’s annual $100 million HPTF is more than any city per capita in the country. Additionally, in her March 30 State-of-the-District address, the mayor announced a new initiative of $10 million dedicated solely to a new public-private housing preservation fund.
Since January 2015, the Bowser Administration has produced and preserved over 3,100 units of affordable housing units in the District with more to come. More than 3,700 affordable housing units—capable of housing more than 9,250 District residents—are in the development pipeline.