ST. JAMES PLAZA
St. James Plaza is the redevelopment of a 3-acre parcel in the west end of Alexandria, VA, the former home of the St. James United Methodist Church and Bi-District Office of the Northern Virginia Methodist Church.
Designed by Cunningham | Quill Architects for AHC, Inc., a leading developer of affordable and mixed-income housing in the mid-Atlantic region, this mixed-use, mixed-income community will provide 93 affordable apartments for families and up to 132 market-rate townhouses organized around a lush central open space. The affordable rental apartment building will include a mix of efficiencies, one-, two-, and three-bedroom units at rents ranging from 40% to 60% of the Area Median Income, supplemented by underground parking, a fitness center, and a community room for residents. A small commercial space also provides early childhood services to children living in both the affordable building and the surrounding community.
Though just outside the Beauregard Small Area Plan, the project was designed to be compatible with its principles including integration of transit, urban design, and open space systems with diversity of housing choices. The new affordable apartments are a welcome addition to Alexandria's Beauregard neighborhood, which has lost a large number of low- and moderate-income units due to new development over the last decade. The project was approved as a Development Special Use Permit (DSUP) by the Alexandria City Council, and awarded Low Income Housing Tax Credits from Virginia Housing.
Sustainability: Earthcraft Platinum
Awards: 2018 Virginia Governor's Award, Best Affordable Housing Development
Photographer: Allen Russ