June 25, 2020
HELP Walter Reed Veterans Apartments has been recognized as the Capital District’s Best Large Affordable Housing Project for 2020.
This annual award is given by HAND, a nonprofit organization that focuses on the production and preservation of affordable housing in Baltimore, MD, Washington, DC, and Richmond, VA.
HELP Walter Reed Veterans Apartments provide affordable permanent supportive housing to 77 formerly homeless military veterans on what was once the Walter Reed Army Medical Center campus in Northwest Washington, D.C. The HELP Walter Reed project is 100% affordable, with 75 units of permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless veterans who make less than 30% of the area median income (AMI), and two units for those who make less than 50% AMI. HELP Walter Reed Veterans Apartments was constructed and is operated by HELP USA.
Residents receive high-quality case management services. The provision of these services informed the building’s design, with centrally located offices for case managers and a nurse’s suite. Other on-site supports include mental health and substance abuse counseling, entitlement management, health care and social programming.
The building includes 24-hour front desk staff and several community gathering areas, including a gym, quiet lounge and library, computer room, movie room, and a large enclosed courtyard. The HELP Walter Reed project also meets Enterprise Green Communities Criteria.
The housing development was a $19M investment in the community. Financing included $10M provided by DC’s Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) using Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds from HUD, tax exempt bond financing through the DC Housing Finance Agency (DCHFA), and $5M in Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity. HELP USA’s real estate development arm also received generous support of $2.6M from philanthropic organizations, including the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, Home Depot, the William S. Abell Foundation, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh, and HAND member A Wider Circle.