Rooted in the philosophy that homelessness is a lack of housing, Carpenter’s Shelter continues to advance a well-planned project in partnership with Alexandria Housing Development Corporation (AHDC) to redevelop our current shelter property into a multi-story building. The new building will feature a purpose-built shelter and 97 affordable rental apartments, including 10 permanent supportive housing units. AHDC’s mission and industry experience were positive attributes that brought our organizations into partnership.
What is the time frame for the project?
Under the current tentative timeline, Carpenter’s Shelter would move out of its current facility in early 2018. We expect the demolition of our current building and the construction of the new building to take approximately 24 months. The new building will provide a purpose-built shelter and administrative offices for Carpenter’s Shelter, and about 97 new affordable housing units, including 10 permanent supportive housing units, to the community.
Will Carpenter’s Shelter remain open during construction of the new building?
Yes, Carpenter’s Shelter is planning for an 24 month relocation during the construction of the new building, with all current services continuing during that time.
What is permanent supportive housing?
Permanent supportive housing combines affordable housing with services that helps people live more stable, productive lives.
 The State of Permanent Supportive Housing in the Commonwealth of Virginia, pg 6.
Will tenants in the 10 permanent supportive housing units have a time limit on their residency in those units?
No, permanent supportive housing is truly permanent. Tenants will sign a legally binding lease and need to adhere to its terms to remain a tenant. Residents in those units can remain as long as they meet the conditions of the lease.
Carpenter’s Shelter is planning to continue all of its current services to people that are homeless and add services for the tenants occupying the permanent supportive housing units.
Will the new building match the rest of the development in the area?
The redevelopment complies with the intent and guidelines desired for the community as expressed in the Braddock Metro Neighborhood Plan.
Is there a need for affordable housing in the area?
Since the Braddock Metro Neighborhood Plan was approved in 2008 approximately 1,000 new market rate units have been constructed in the area, with only 10 of these being affordable units. Market rate units in this area range have a monthly rent of approximately $1,500 for a studio unit to over $2,500 for a two bedroom unit. The new affordable units within this project would rent from approximately $700 for a studio to $1,500 monthly for a three bedroom unit.
The decision to redevelop was made after careful deliberation by the Board of Directors and staff of Carpenter’s Shelter. Rooted in the belief that homelessness is a lack of affordable housing, Carpenter’s Shelter works hard to help our residents return to permanent housing in the community. To have a new shelter as well as 97 more affordable units in the City of Alexandria’s housing stock will create a benefit for those served by Carpenter’s Shelter.
What will the new building be like?
Carpenter’s Shelter’s current facility will be torn down and in its place will be a multi-story building with an underground parking garage. The purpose-built shelter and administrative offices for Carpenter’s Shelter will be on the first floor of the building. The upper floors with the 97 affordable rental units, named The Bloom, will be operated by AHDC. The apartments will range in size from studios to three bedroom units and be available for those making 40-60% of the area median income.
Click here for more information about the new building.