A Church’s Inspiring Mission to Support Affordable Housing

Updated: Aug 30



Located just south of Washington, DC and rich in cultural history, Alexandria, VA is a prime residential location that continues to grow in popularity. However, as of 2017, Alexandria had lost over 90% of its affordable housing since the year 2000. Aware of the ongoing housing crisis, the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection (ECR) decided to follow their mission and build affordable housing on their property to support the community. Working with affordable housing developer AHC Inc. and the Church, Cunningham | Quill transformed this previously underdeveloped property into one that provides 113 units of affordable housing and a new 5,000 SF church.


The Spire is now a modern, affordable, and residential setting that opens out to the surrounding community. The project ensures that families whose incomes are from 30% to 60% AMI (the area’s average median income), can remain in a spirited community within walking distance to neighborhood schools, stores, and public transit that includes bus and bike-share stations. The design also ensures easy access to the surrounding landscape and the internal courtyard that is shared with the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection, facilitating connection across a diversity of backgrounds.


The new Episcopal Church of the Resurrection sits on the former location of a portion of the original church. The new facility includes administrative offices, a parish hall, kitchen, a cross axis narthex circulation spine, and a new nave worship space. A new site stairway connects the boulevard to the church and adjacent gathering spaces.



Featured Projects:


The Spire (eight-story affordable multifamily building with 113 units, a two-story community/exercise room area, and park-like courtyard): Earthcraft Multifamily Gold Certification


Architect: Cunningham | Quill Architects

Developer: AHC, Inc.

Builder: Harkins Builders, Inc.

Photographer: Allen Russ



#architecture #cunninghamquillarchitects #cunninghamquill #vaarchitects #vadesigners #design #affordablehousing #designabetterfuture #earthcraft