Bexhill Condominium Development, Washington D.C.
The Ivy City community in Washington, D.C., is one of the most distressed neighborhoods in the nation’s capital. The median household income in the area is $20,923, compared to a citywide median household income of $78,192. Foreclosures, vacant properties and poverty have contributed to the area’s continued decline.
Because of the distressed nature of the area, the city’s Department of Housing and Community Development dedicated a considerable portion of the city’s Neighborhood Stabilization Program grant to help improve and stabilize the neighborhood. Manna was awarded properties to develop – 20 units of new construction on vacant lots that will add new housing and improve the perception of Ivy City as a desirable neighborhood to live and work.
The city’s funding was not intended to cover the entire project. Manna turned to its partners, including CHC, to get the job done. “When we started pre-development on the property, there wasn’t a bank in the country – in the universe – that would fund a homeownership project,” recalls Manna’s Director of Project Management, Rozanne Look. “CHC was there when nobody else was.”
Green elements, including energy-efficient windows, Energy Star appliances and formaldehyde-free engineered wood products, attracted the interest of buyers from across the metropolitan area and within the neighborhood – resulting in pre-sales of 80 percent of the homes. The units are available to those earning 50 percent and 80 percent of the area median income.
Families are now moving into the newly developed homes, which are generating excitement and new investment for this long-neglected area and improving life for its residents. “By developing these vacant lots, we are helping to create a safe and healthy environment for residents,” said Look.
Said Kathryn, a resident at Bexhill, “I am a Washingtonian. I feel like I have a connection to the community. After my divorce, this is a new beginning for me. I work only two blocks up the street. It's good to be here.”