Courtesy of via Twitter
**FILE** Courtesy of via Twitter

The DC Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) announces it has awarded two District-owned properties to two local development companies for the construction of 40 new townhomes, capable of housing over 100 residents, located in Wards 7 and 8.

“We are making good on our promise to aggressively put vacant and blighted properties into productive use,” said DHCD Director Polly Donaldson. “With these awards, the Ward 7 and Ward 8 properties will be transformed into affordable housing geared toward families.”

In Ward 8, Flywheel Development LLC was selected for its proposal to construct 16 affordable townhomes at 3401 13th St. SE that will consume Zero Net Energy, and meet the Passive Housing and Living Building Challenge Petal standards.

Fourteen units will be sold to households earning at or below 80 percent of the area median income (AMI) and two units will be sold at 50 percent AMI. All units will include three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a parking space and total approximately 1,400 square feet of living space. Each home will be zero net energy compliant, which means it will produce the same amount of energy it consumes. Each home also will be built to passive housing standards that will rely on energy and cost efficient architecture and construction.

“Flywheel is thrilled to work with DHCD to bring 16 affordable net zero energy homes to Congress Heights,” said John Miller, who along with co-principal Jessica Lawrence started the firm in 2013. “In addition to achieving affordable prices, these net zero energy homes have the potential to save homeowners thousands on their energy bills, build stronger households and help the District meet its sustainability goals,” Lawrence said.

In Ward 7, Neighborhood Development Company (NDC) was selected to lead the development of a parcel of land located at Minnesota Avenue and 27th Street SE to produce 24 townhome units with a minimum of 1,300 square feet of living space. The townhomes will have at least two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Twelve of the properties will be sold to households earning at or below 50 percent AMI.

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.

Additionally, in her March 30 State of the District address, the mayor announced as part of her inclusive prosperity platform a new initiative of $10 million dedicated solely to a new public-private housing preservation fund.

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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