In May 2011, Somerset and its joint venture partner, THC Affordable Housing, Inc., completed the historic renovation of Fort View Apartments. Formerly known as Fort Stevens Place Apartments, these once vacant buildings are located in Ward 4 adjacent to the historic Fort Stevens Park. The apartment complex has been renamed Fort View Apartments, which was its original name. Built in 1939, Fort View was designed by George Santmyers, a well-known architect in Washington, DC and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places by the development team. The property has been restored to its historic character and has been preserved as affordable housing for 62 families with a range of incomes, turning what were once blighted buildings into a vibrant, new community asset.
In cooperation with the DC Housing Authority, the property is providing permanent housing with supportive services for 18 formerly homeless families who have successfully graduated from transitional housing programs. On-site resident services provided by Transitional Housing Corporation assures their successful tenancies in this workforce housing complex.
The redevelopment of Fort View provided upgrades in its infrastructure and safety standards provided new landscaping and lighting, and common spaces. In meeting the City’s green building environmental standards, all environmental hazards were remediated and energy efficiency was vastly improved. New community spaces, a computer lab and an on-site management office have been built and the historic character of the building has been preserved.
The financing for the acquisition and redevelopment was provided by DC Housing Finance Agency’s New Issue Bond Program sponsored by the U.S. Treasury with credit enhancement from Freddie Mac. Enterprise Community Investment, Inc. was the syndicator of the Low Income Housing Tax Credits and Historic Tax Credits, and Bank of America was the construction lender. The DC Department of Community Development provided a loan through the federal TCAP (Tax Credit Assistance Program) and the Community Development Block Grant. The DC Housing Authority provided a capital grant through its Local Rent Supplement Program and is providing rent subsidy in support of 18 families on site. Transitional Housing Corporation is implementing a robust program of resident services.