Fairfax leaders buy in (literally and figuratively) to McLean affordable housing

Fairfax County supervisors on Aug. 2 authorized the spending of $33.3 million to construct 453 affordable dwellings on this site in western McLean near the I-495/Route 123 cloverleaf.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved $33.3 million to acquire roughly four acres in Tyson’s urban center to support the development of 450 affordable housing units by SCG Development Partners, LLC.

According to a news release, the units will be a combination of studio, one, two and three-bedroom apartments and include about 5,000 square feet of community space. Households at 40-70 percent of Area Median Income (AMI) will qualify for the units

The site is within walking distance of several bus stops, and medical, educational, recreational and commercial amenities are within a three-mile radius.

A seven-story office building currently situated on the property, known as Somos at McLean Metro, will be demolished and replaced with two buildings -- one eight-story building and one five-story building.

County supervisors set a goal of 10,000 affordable housing units by 2034 and have been steadily making progress. Supervisor Dalia Palchik praised the move, saying income should not determine opportunity or outcome in the county.

“Our commitment to affordable housing in Fairfax County is characterized by a resolve to build livable spaces, full of engagement and opportunities for all residents – regardless of race, income, or ZIP code – to live their best lives,” she said.

The financing will be administered by the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority.

The county’s Redevelopment and Housing Authority will retain ownership of the land located on Old Meadow Road and lease it to SCG.

Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority Chair Melissa McKenna said they are using an innovative financing plan to secure ground ownership and ensure long-term affordability.

“We are applying these resources in a heavily connected area that will provide jobs, education, recreation, social engagement and so much more for our residents,” McKenna said.

Board of Supervisors Chair Jeffrey McKay said constructing more affordable housing units in Fairfax will allow more people to live there.

“Affordable housing is a crucial component in sustaining the progress and success of Tysons and Fairfax County, and we will work nonstop to achieve our ultimate goal that everyone who works here can also afford to live here,” McKay said.

Out of the $33 million, only $13 million will come from local taxpayers through the Affordable Housing Development and Investment Fund. The remaining funds will come from The American Rescue Plan Act and the Tysons Housing Trust Fund.

Acacia James covers Fairfax County with a focus on affordable housing, access to transportation and other issues affecting underserved communities. 

(1) comment

Janet Smith

The "affordable housing" scam continues in Fairfax County (which has a Housing Authority that's supposed to be building actually-affordable housing for a low-wage retail, restaurant, admin. employees, aka the Tysons's workforce, not taxpayer-subsidized luxury housing for an Amazon and Capital One techforce with household incomes close to $100,000 / year, with a few units available to Tyson's restaurant and boutique retail and restaurant managers who earn $60,000 / year.

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