• For more information on Green Party membership or to contact Green Party leadership, email info@greensofarlington.org Join the Arlington Greens in person on Wednesday, Oct 5, 2022, at 7 PM in the community room of the Ballston Firehouse located at Wilson Blvd and George Mason Drive.

September 20, 2022

Arlington Greens meet on Wed. Oct 5 at 7 pm

Uncategorized — @ 11:46 am

Arlington Greens will meet on Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 7 pm at the Ballston Firehouse Community Room (located at George Mason Drive and Wilson Boulevard); we invite you to join us and wear a mask if you choose.

Major topics:
Missing middle zoning proposal

Bond referendum of nearly $510 million for Arlington on November ballot for voter approval–$177 million for upgrading sewage plant and drinking water system,   $165 million for schools, $53 million for new county buildings, $52 million for Metro and transport, $40 million for stormwater infrastructure, and $22 million for parks and recreation facilities.  https://www.arlingtonva.us/Government/Programs/Budget-Finance/Bonds/2022-Bond-Referenda

Greens initiatives for climate change for Arlington–petition on banning gas blowers and petition on a carbon neutral building code

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June 6, 2022

Greens ask County Board to delay missing middle upzoning

Uncategorized — @ 12:59 pm

Letter to the Arlington County Board from Arlington Greens

Dear County Board members:
Arlington Greens ask that you delay any consideration of the missing middle zoning proposal until at least the Fall of this year.  We discussed and approved this position at our June meeting.


Greens are concerned that the proposal is not well thought out, may have negative effects on the environment of our county, and well not focused on affordable housing.   Loss of tree canopy and open unpaved surfaces in detached family neighborhoods will have the effect of greatly increasing storm water runoff, increasing the temperatures in Arlington in warm months, and may well negatively affect the air quality.

The “missing middle” proposal does not explicitly identify the income levels of beneficiaries of more “middle income housing,” but implicitly these are households in the middle bracket for income making about $140,000 to $165,000 annually.  In 2022, the median household income in Arlington is about $154,000, the median house is t $704,000, and the median rent is $2,000 a month ( Arlington, Virginia Population 2022 (Demographics, Maps, Graphs) (worldpopulationreview.com)

Presumably, the purpose of this zoning change is to increase the housing supply for households in the median income of around $154,000 a year.  A household earning $154,000 a year can today afford a 30-year mortgage (with standard down payment) on a residence valued at or below $704,000 or this household could afford a rent of about $4,000 a month (using HUD rental guidelines).  Zillow now lists over 200 homes for sale in Arlington for under $704,000 today (mostly condos and townhouses), and 320 rental units for $4,000 or less a month.  The private market today does provide a good supply of rental or home purchases choices if somebody makes $154,000.

There is no “missing” supply of rental or for-purchase units in Arlington County today for households making around $154,000 a year.   There is nothing missing in the supply today for somebody making $154,000.   Any argument to the counter is not supported by economic data on housing.  What is “missing” in the “missing middle” is logic and economic facts.

The real shortage of supply of housing options is for households making under $50,000 a year.  There are virtually no rental units affordable at that income level of an affordable rent of $1,200 a month, far below the median $2,000 rent.   Thus, the “missing housing supply” is for households in the bottom 25-percent income group rather than those in the 50-percent income group.

The missing middle proposal is based on bogus assumptions or faulty data or is designed for some other purpose than generating a supply of housing units for households making the median income in Arlington today.  In any event, this proposal is not ready for community evaluation and needs to go back to the drawing board.
Thank you for your consideration, the Arlington Greens

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May 26, 2022

Arlington Greens meet in person, Wed. June 1, 7 PM in Community Room of Ballston Firehouse

Uncategorized — @ 2:01 pm

Arlington Greens will meet in person for the first time since March 2020 at the Ballston Firehouse Community Room (located at Wilson Blvd and George Mason Drive) starting at 7 PM on Wednesday, June1, 2022.
Major topics of discussion:
Petition to advance a carbon neutral community energy plan in Arlington (see below); we intend to start circulating it in June
County proposal to change zoning of single residential lots into multi-housing lots (“Missing middle”)
Local offices up for election in November
We hope to see you in person; wear a mask if you choose and we hope that everyone is fully vaccinated who attends.

Petition to the Arlington County Board of Supervisors asking it to approve a Community Energy Plan with a carbon-neutral new building code; free home energy audits; and preservation of all existing large trees and unpaved permiable space

Nearly 3 years ago (in September 2019), the Arlington County Board approved an aspirational goal that Arlington County VA residents and all business would become carbon neutral in their operating energy use by 2050, but since the Board has approved nothing concrete to achieve this worthy goal, and climate change and flooding in the County have worsened.

Therefore, we the undersigned residents of Arlington Virginia hereby petition our elected Arlington County Board to adopt a Community Energy Plan that will achieve carbon neutrality within the county within 30 years through the following mechanisms, as well as other proven measures not herein listed: l. All new houses and commercial building must be built under a carbon neutral building code, with most or all of energy used generated on-site through solar panels and geo-thermal heating/cooling, and building energy use reduced through more insulation, tighter building envelope, and better engineering.

2. All owners of the 40,000 existing detached or attached homes in the county will be offered a free home energy audit with the goal to help the homeowner cut carbon use by 15% or more through weatherization, insulation, adding solar panels, and other means.

3. The county will change its zoning and building code to compel builders of new homes and commercial buildings to keep all large existing trees intact, and to make sure there is no net loss of existing unpaved permiable surface area so that storm water remains on the property as much as possible, and not flooding other areas, and heat temps kept as low as possible in warm months.

Name – Signature

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January 27, 2022

Greens support changes to state historic preservation law to block demolition of nominated historic sites, and allow historians court access

Greens support changes in the the Virginia Historic Preservation law (section 15.2-2306 of the Code of Virginia)  (as written in Senate Bill No. 206 and House Bill No. 1210) to do two things:

                                    Stop the demolition of nominated historic sites, buildings, houses and landmarks until the local government with input from local residents and historians has completed its review and decision whether to designate a nominated site, and 

                                    Allow local residents and historians who nominate a historic site to have access to court review of locality final decisions to ensure that the state law is followed.

Please sign the Moveon.org petition to the Virginia General Assembly.
https://sign.moveon.org/petitions/support-proposed-legislation-for-virginia-historic-preservation?share=412d9df2-7d94-43fc-ba61-5bf4c2c286ef&source=s.fwd&utm_source=s.fwd

It is important that historic houses, sites, buildings, and landmarks and areas should be preserved throughout the Virginia, but our current historic preservation law is flawed and should be changed to help keep threatened historic sites as much as possible.  Bulldozers move into demolish nominated sites before the local historic review process is completed.  Local residents and historic advocates have no access to ask for court review and thus often the state historic law is ignored. 

In 2021, the historic Febrey-Lothrop-Rouse (FLR, a graceful 175-year old mansion that had served as Union army hospital, was demolished just a few weeks before the Arlington County Board public hearing and vote on local historic designation despite the pleas of over 1,400 residents and historians. The county board voted against designation and historians were kicked out of court as having no rights to ask for court review.

Local governments must have the time to consider and approve or disapprove historic designation of a site or building or landmark and during that time no demolition or destruction of the nominated site, building or landmark should be allowed.  Further, under current state law, petitioners and advocates for historic preservation have no right to seek court review of a locality decision to deny historic protection as to whether this decision violated the state law.  Petitioners for local historic protection must have the same access to the courts as only property owners do today.

This petition with a listing of its signers will be delivered to the patrons of the legislations in the Virginia General Assembly, Senator Chap Petersen (Fairfax) and Delegate Patrick Hope (Arlington).   Signers may also email their own Virginia delegate and senator directly if they so choose (find your Virginia state legislator and email here  https://whosmy.virginiageneralassembly.gov/)

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March 18, 2021

Greens ask county board to increase housing (rental) grants and emergency housing assistance in fy 2022

Uncategorized — @ 12:15 pm

Arlington Greens support the county manager’s proposal to increase FY 2022 spending on housing grants to $12.7 million, and also the $17.5 million proposal for emergency Covid spending that includes emergency rental assistance for unpaid rents, food assistance and related help to residents who lost income or jobs during the pandemic.   

While the good news is that widespread vaccinations will make possible reopening, many tenants are facing unpaid back rents and need help in FY 2022 to avoid eviction.
We have reservations about the $8.9 million the manager proposes to spend for AHIF to fund the building of more subsidized apartments CAFs) next fiscal year. 

There is a glut of market rate apartments and subsidized units available for rent today in Arlington, and now is a bad time for any new units to enter the market, private or nonprofit. 

Commercial realty companies report that rents in Arlington for apartments have dropped from 8 to 15 percent in the past 12 months, depending on the neighborhood, and there are at least 15% of existing apartments are now vacant.  The county housing division this month listed about 100 CAFs available for rent, and thus even CAFs are empty, and the nonprofit providers having a hard time renting existing CAFs. 


The best way to provide housing assistance right now is a housing voucher or an emergency grant to pay back unpaid rents.  There are still thousands of renter households who maintained their jobs but still pay over 50 percent of their incomes for rent (generally tenant earning under 50% of the area median income).  The county should shift all of the new AHIF funds into housing grants or emergency back rent grants so that tenants can stay in their apartments and not have a heavy housing cost burden.

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March 15, 2021

Arlington residents protest demolition of historic Febrey house and property Saturday, March 20, 10 AM

Uncategorized — @ 4:05 pm

We invite you to a silent, socially distanced protest on Saturday, March 20, at 10 am outside the Febrey house (6407 Wilson Boulevard, at Wilson and McKinley Road) to grieve the county board’s decision to allow demolition of the house and estate before the April 17 public hearing on historic preservation of the estate.   

The county board granted the demolition permit to the property owner despite our pleas and common sense to keep the house intact until after the public hearing. 

The property owner has refused to allow county historians to even visit the house and grounds–we believe there are Civil War artifacts and possible human remains of Civil War soldiers buried on the property.  Many mature trees, some a hundred years old, and shrubs will be lost in addition to the house. 

Our county government refuses to use its authority under state law and county ordinance to save this historic site and places the profits of a developer above our community’s interest in more parkland and keeping an important Civil War historic site.

Bring your camera and your own sign urging the county borad to reverse its decision and stop the bulldozers.

The county board under state law could have delayed issuing the demo permit and followed state historic preservation law.  Instead, the board really wants the estate bulldozed before its April 17 public hearing. 

The county parks and rec commission has repeatedly asked the county board for a decade to purchase the property and add it to our parkland, but the county board refuses and pleads poverty even though Arlington voters have repeatedly approved many millions of dollars for parks bonds to purchase more parkland.  

It is outrageous in a wealthy community such as Arlington with a rising population that these 9 acres of mostly open land cannot be purchased as a park for all to enjoy, and the house preserved as a historic center and community house for all residents to enjoy.   Thousands of Union soliders camped and lived on the Febrey house which also served as a hospital, and significant battles fought nearby.

Silent protest:    Wear a mask, bring your own sign if possible                           

Saturday, March 20, 10 AM  Outside the Febrey House,

6407 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington VA  22205

                            Please park on McKinley Road or on Madison Street.

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December 7, 2020

Reduce noise and air pollution in Arlington: Ban Gas Leaf Blowers and Mowers in Arlington

Uncategorized — @ 4:04 pm

Reduce noise and air pollution in Arlington:  Ban Gas Power Blowers and Mowers and Lawn equipment

With the fall season of dropping leaves, the scourge of loud gas powered leaf blowers has returned to disturb the peace, and worsen the air quality of Arlington neighborhoods.  While many Arlington residents may accept this as just a necessary but largely harmless nuisance, research on noise and air quality indicate that gas-powered mowers and blowers pose a significant health risk to people. Many U.S. cities, and the District of Columbia (starting in 2022) ban the gas-fired equipment and require the use of quiet and clean electric models.

The development of electric blowers, mowers and other lawn equipment and reliable batteries now provides homeowners and lawn service companies with a 21st Century advance that can radically cut the harmful noise and air pollution of gas engines. The noise level of electric motors is very quiet and there is no generation of air pollution.  With climate change, eventually all gas engines will need to be eliminated in vehicles and appliances, so changing to only electric lawn equipment is a needed step for climate change mitigation and reduces harmful greenhouse gases.

About 100 U.S. cities have banned or restricted use of gas-fired blowers.[1]  According to a January 2020 article in Electrek,[2] the State of California is looking to ban all gas powered lawn equipment while 16 California and 3 Colorado cities and the District of Columbia (beginning in 2022) already ban these fossil fuel nuisances.  The advent of reliable battery-operated electric models and their modest cost and reliability make gasoline model a harmful anachronism.  Electric models are cheaper to run than gasoline fired ones.[3]

The two-stroke gasoline motor in lawn equipment is very inefficient in burning gasoline, as compared to automobile 4 stroke engines, and thus emit high levels of harmful pollutants.   One hour of operation of a gas-fired blower generates as much pollutants as a Toyota Camry driving 1,100 miles, according to the California Air Resources Board.   Gasoline itself is highly toxic and flammable, and causes many fires in homes or garages.  The EPA estimated that 17 million gallons of gasoline are spilled annually just filling up lawn mowers.

Lawn mowers and blowers worsen allergies and asthma, and irritate the lungs by propelling clouds of dust, and dirt and chemical into the air.  Blowers remove beneficial soil mulch and harm living plants.  As to noise, gas powered blowers noise level are often over 100 decibels (dB).  A jet plane take off generates 100 dB of noise; any noise level above 85 dB is considered harmful to human health.  The CDC indicates that two hours of 91 dB noise for 15 minutes daily can result in permanent hearing loss.[4]

Gas blowers also have a unique and low penetrating frequency that makes them much louder than electric models even with the same rated decibel level.  Most electric blowers are rated at or below 70 decibels, and gas blowers at the operator level at 100 or more decibels.  The decibel level measure is logarithmic function rather than proportionate, and thus, a gas blower at 90 dB is 100 times noisier than an electric blower at 70 dB.   Electric lawn mowers are similarly quieter than gas fired mowers which generally operate at above 80 db. 

The Arlington noise ordinance is out of data and unenforceable

Some may say that the solution to this environmental problem is the Arlington County Noise ordinance[5] that was enacted in 2014; it provides a maximum noise level in residential neighborhoods of 90 dB.   The basic problem with the ordinance is that the 90 dB level is too harmfully high, but more importantly there is no enforcement of the ordinance today as it applies to excessive lawn equipment noise. 

An Arlington noise inspector indicated in December 2020 that no enforcement action is taken until generally 5-7 business days after a complaint is filed, and by the time the inspector arrives, the noise violation is most likely over.[6]   The county will not accept as evidence citizen-recorded noise and videos of the noise complaint.   Therefore, even if the maximum level were lowered to 70 dB, the lack of enforcement means the ordinance is useless in most cases for lawn equipment.

The only practical solution to the environmental problem of gas-fired lawn equipment is their ban.  Limiting their hours or limiting the maximum noise level is insufficient since there is no enforcement of even the current ordinance.

Replacement of current gas-powered blowers and mowers is practical and not costly

A proposed three-year phase out of current gas-powered models will allow landscaping companies and homeowners time to replace these with battery-powered models;  most gas-fired models wear out within three years and have costly maintenance.  Electric blowers and mowers have little or no maintenance cost and last years if not decades.  In addition, electric models have lower operating costs of fuel than gas models, so that the cost of an electric can be lower than today’s polluting gas models.

In Arlington, most yard maintenance is done by landscaping companies rather than homeowners.  So, most of the capital cost will be absorbed by the companies rather than homeowners.  


[1] James Fallows, “Politics:  Get of my lawn, how a small group of activists got leaf blowers banned in the nation’s capital,” the Atlantic, April 2019.

[2] Charles Benoit, “California looking to ban gas-powered lawnmower, leaf blowers,” Jan. 9, 2020,  Electrek,  https://electrek.co/2020/01/09

[3] “Myth 4,” Facts and myths about leaf blowers, Quiet DC, Dec. 4, 2020.  Facts & Myths — Quiet Clean D.C.  http://www.quietcleandc.com/factsmyths

[4] Facts and myths about leaf blowers, Quiet DC, Dec. 4, 2020.  Facts & Myths — Quiet Clean D.C.

[5] Chapter 5 of the Arlington Code,  https://building.arlingtonva.us/codes-ordinances/noise/

[6]  Phone conversation with Arlington Noise code inspector, Nov. 27, 2020.

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October 26, 2020

Arlington Residential Energy Conservation Program: Give out $1,000 grants to Arlington homeowners to weatherize, conserve, and reduce carbon emissions by up to 20 percent

environment,Uncategorized — @ 4:28 pm

Carbon emissions in Arlington averaged 9.1 metric tons (MT) per capita in 2016 or a total 2.0 million MT for Arlington.  About 23 percent of carbon emissions in Arlington came from homes, according to Arlington County.  In 2019, the Arlington County Board set the goal in the Arlington Community Energy Plan (CEP) to have a carbon neutral Arlington by 2050.

There are 28,500 were single family-detached houses, and 11,200 single family-attached houses in Arlington, most of which are owner occupied. Energy conservation (generally weatherization, insulation, and sealing air leaks) is the most cost effective way to reduce carbon emissions in a house; many houses in Arlington were built decades ago, and while some have been improved to high energy efficiency, the majority have not.  

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has indicated that low cost weatherization and more insulation can cut household use of electricity by 7 percent and heating by 18 percent, and save the homeowner about $300 a year.  Such energy conservation is the ‘low hanging fruit’ of addressing climate change.

To encourage Arlington homeowners to undertake energy conservation, the county government should fund a program to give out a $1,000 grant to cover the costs so every household can have an energy audit, and then do the most effective and lowest cost recommendations to cut heating and cooling.   The goal would be to reduce the energy use over 5 years in three-quarters of the 40,000 existing single-family detached and attached Arlington households by up to 20 percent. This will NOT make the house carbon neutral, but it will cut carbon emissions in homes substantially, and perhaps homeowners would take additional steps like solar panels on roof on their own.

The program would operate on a neighborhood-by-neighborhood basis to recruit Arlington homeowners to have a free energy audit of their home that would provide a detailed plan for energy conservation measures to cut use of electricity, water and natural gas.  The program would pay the homeowner $50 for participating, and then up to $1,000 for the highest priority energy improvements recommended in the energy audit.   This program’s goal is to have all homeowners eventually get an energy audit, and to begin to at least do the low cost changes that will reduce energy use.

Existing weatherization programs today in Arlington are targeted at low income homeowners of whom there are few in Arlington, and thus weatherization has not met its full potential.  EcoAction Arlington has had a small program of weatherization done by volunteers in low income apartments and houses.   Inertia and lack of interest by many homeowners and the hassle of getting an energy audit, and then following up with contractors or the homeowner doing the work them self, has impeded energy conservation in Arlington.

Funding for the residential energy conservation program would be obtained by raising the Arlington utility tax on electricity and the separate tax on natural gas from current $3 per household per month to $6 per month and eventually to $15 per month.  This is a carbon tax that makes electricity and natural gas more expensive.  The tax proceeds from the additional utility tax would mostly be rebated to homeowners to weatherize and reduce their utility bills by more than the additional tax would cost.

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October 19, 2018

Greens Oppose County and School Bonds, but Favor Metrorail Bond

Arlington Greens Oppose as Wasteful the Three County and School Bonds on the Arlington County, Virginia November Ballot, but Support the Metro Bond

Arlington Greens voted at their October meeting to oppose three of the four bonds on the November ballot, but to support the $75 million bond for Metro and transportation.  Greens felt that the need for more spending on Metrorail is imperative given safety, and improving bus and rail reliability, and urged Arlington voters to vote “Yes” for the Metro bond on the ballot referendum.

Greens however oppose the $29 million parks and recreation bond, the $37 million community infrastructure, and the $103 million public schools bond.  None of these three bonds are based on well thought out projects that have already been carefully designed, bid for construction costs, and scrutinized for waste.  The parks and recreation bonds will actually destroy or impair parkland since it will be used to build and pave over existing green space, demolish trees, and build extravagant energy-wasteful buildings.

The county government is issuing $80 million in bonds this year, and moreover has another $108 million in unused authority to issue more bonds, with more than sufficient funds for its needs. The county government and the school board both need to go back to the planning boards, and come back with precise and accurate information on projects for Arlington voters to consider.

About $44 million of the proposed $103 million school bond is to be used to build an entirely new Reed Elementary School in Westover.  The latest estimated cost of Reed is already far more at least $55 million, with possibly tens of millions of dollars in costs for a parking garage.  The school board has no idea what Reed School will cost.  In 2009, the school board spent about $20 million to fully renovate and expand Reed School which now will be demolished. Why?

The City of Alexandria just opened a new elementary school that cost around $22 million and was completed in about one year.   The City bought an commercial office building and re-modeled it into a 500-student school that opened in one year.   Fairfax County Public Schools did this several years ago to build an elementary school at 7-Corners within one year.   Why does Arlington have to build the most expensive schools in the U.S. and then tear them down ten years later?

If the county goes ahead and issues another $243 million of bonds on the ballot in November, it will likely endanger the county’s triple-A bond rating for municipal bonds since this will pass the 10 percent limit on bond service used by leading municipal bond rating companies.

The county already has issued $1.1 billion in bonds, and adding $243 million as well as the $188 million in already authorized bond will raise the debt service to over 10 percent of the county’s general revenue.

 

 

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February 11, 2014

Convert Empty Commercial Office Buildings in Crystal City and Rosslyn into Affordable Apartments

crystalcitypic1crystalcitypic3The rapid exit of many Defense Department agencies from both Crystal City and Rosslyn left an astounding 25 percent of the existing commercial office buildings empty in the fourth quarter 2013, according to the Arlington Economic Development Office. The overall Arlington commercial office vacancy rate is not much lower—20 percent in the fourth quarter 2013 (Economic Indicators, http://www.arlingtonvirginiausa.com/?LinkServID=8CBD27F2-1D09-08FB-3B16404C0DD82AE3&showMeta=0

The vacancy rates in Ballston and Virginia Square area are now 15 and 17 percent, respectively. The Northern Virginia average vacancy rate is now about 17 percent so there are plenty of other vacant buildings in other Metro adjacent areas competing for office building tenants, particularly along the Tysons Corner -Reston corridor. These buildings become more attractive with the opening of the Silver Line.

Arlington vacancy rates are going to rise higher as more Defense agencies and related military contractors leave Arlington for military bases like Fort Belvoir owing to BRAC. The General Services Administration (GSA), the real estate arm of the Federal Government, has so far terminated about 20 building leases in Crystal City the most impacted area in the Metro region through the end of 2013, and will end another 34 building leases by 2019, according to a Washington Post article (“D.J. OBrien, “CoStar: Despite jump in office vacancy rate, Crystal City shows resilience,” September 29, 2013.)

The end of 20 building leases led in part to a 25-percent vacancy rate in Rosslyn and Crystal City, the end of another 34 building leases is going to raise the vacancy rate much further.

There are a total 22 million square feet of commercial office space in Rosslyn and Crystal City (9 million and 13 million square feet, respectively), 5 million square feet vacant. A typical, 11 story- office building has about 225,000 square feet of usable space, and thus there are the equivalent of 22 empty office buildings in Rosslyn and Crystal City today.

A typical residential apartment building of 11 stories can accommodate around 200 apartments; this was the size of a recent residential apartment building in Crystal City built over the old post office site. Twenty-two commercial office buildings renovated into residential apartments could provide roughly 4,400 apartments; more if the units were smaller in size.

How much would a vacant office building cost to acquire? The county recently purchased a fully occuppied 7-story office building at the Courthouse for use as a county office building and homeless shelter for $27 million. An empty office building is worth considerably less since the dollar value of a building is largely a function of the office rents received or potentially received.

If an empty 11-store office building can be acquired for $20 million and potentially converted to 200 apartments of about 1,100 square feet each, the un-renovated cost of each apartment is about $100,000. Keeping renovation costs down to $100,000 per apartment, would mean an affordable apartment could cost $200,000. If the building contained 200 small efficiency 600 square foot apartments and 100 1,100 square foot apartments, were built instead of the larger 1,100 mix, the average costs would be $170,000–$70,000 per unit acquitision and $100,000 per unit renovation.
This cost is still below what the most recent affordable apartment complext cost ($250,000 per unit at Arlington Mills).

Together Rosslyn and Crystal City have 13,000 residential units (respectively 7,000 and 6,000). Another 4,000 apartments would increase their total residential units by about 30 percent, and bring in a good mix of mixed income residents. Neither area has an abundance of affordable units; Rosslyn in particular has lost many thousands of low rise affordable apartments owing to gentrification.
Both areas are “office building deserts,” lacking a good balance of residents and commerce. From an urban planning perspective, adding 4,000 affordable apartments would be good.

Arlington today needs about 14,000 more residential apartments to meet its shortage of affordable housing, according to the Va Tech Center for Housing Research. If 4,000 affordable apartments could be acquired at a modest cost from owners of empty office buildings, it would be a major boost to meeting the shortage.

Arlington County owing to the high cost of acquiring or building new apartments (even on public land) has been unable to add even 300 units annually. In 2013, the county added only 55 units. Meanwhile market forces eliminate about 900 units annually owing to demolition, (more…)

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