With financing in place, construction has begun on Lucille and Bruce Terwilliger Place, a project of the Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing (APAH) on Washington Boulevard that also will serve as a new home to American Legion Post 139.
The $80 million project on the 1.3-acre Virginia Square site will give Armed Forces veterans first priority for half the building’s 160 affordable units, with resident services geared to the needs of veterans.
The parcel had served as home for decades for the American Legion post, which in 2016 opted to partner with APAH on redevelopment.
“Terwilliger Place offers a blueprint for veteran service organizations like the American Legion to partner with nonprofit developers to put their land to use on behalf of vulnerable veterans – men and women who have ably served our country but now find themselves struggling with significant health and housing challenges,” said Debbie Burkart, national vice president of supportive housing at National Equity Fund, one of the financial partners for the $80 million project.
APAH president/CEO Nina Janopaul noted that there are 20,000 organizations similar to Post 139 across the country, many facing declining membership and aging facilities.
“Imagine the difference it would make for veterans and affordable housing if even a fraction of them adopted this model,” she said.
The Terwilliger Family Foundation provided a gift of $1.5 million to support construction, and the new project will be named in honor of the parents of developer Ron Terwilliger.
“I was pleased to fund this innovative project, because Arlington is my hometown and I attended the Naval Academy,” he said. “I want to support those who have served in our military and now need an affordable home.”