Over the past decade, Arlington County, Va., has lost 10,000 affordable housing units due to repositioning or redevelopment of higher-income rentals. Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing (APAH) is replenishing units while pioneering new development methods.

Arlington Mill Residences, completed in February, is the first new affordable housing development of the Columbia Pike corridor revitalization efforts.

The 122-unit development serves a mix of populations. Ninety-eight two- and three-bedroom units meet the needs of larger families, and 13 are set aside for formerly homeless individuals and families.

The nonprofit reduced its development costs through a partnership with Arlington County. The county provided a 75-year ground lease for a one-time, up-front payment of $1.5 million, a discount of $6 million from the appraised lease value. The development also benefits from being constructed atop a county-built parking garage and adjacent to the Arlington Mill Community Center.

In addition to on-site services, the county—through the Virginia Housing Trust Fund—provides a caseworker for the supportive housing units. Residents also have access to the community center.

“What’s neat about the community center is it has programs for toddlers to seniors,” says APAH president and CEO Nina Janopaul.

The $31.2 million project was financed with low-income housing tax credit equity from Bank of America Merrill Lynch and a Virginia Housing Development Authority first mortgage.