HAND Member Spotlight: Transitional Housing Corporation, Transforming the Lives of the Most Vulnerable
When Transitional Housing Corporation (THC) broke ground on its newest property last October, the Harry and Jeannette Weinberg Commons, the District moved a little closer to creating more environmentally sustainable homes for families in need. The first multi-family Passive House in the area, Weinberg Commons will provide 12 apartments for families in need of permanent supportive housing and 24 apartments for families making between 30 – 60% of AMI all the while helping to minimize the energy footprint of the City.
Passive House design reduces the amount of energy usage in a building, keeping utility costs low and rents affordable. Instead of relying on active energy reduction systems with high-installation costs, Passive House buildings concentrate on energy use reduction and work with natural systems to manage heat gain and loss, resulting in possible utility costs savings of up to 90 percent. Located at 5010 Southern Avenue in southeast, the project will provide a deep energy retrofit on the property and will include super-insulation, an air-tight building shell and balanced energy recovery ventilation. In addition to being an innovative approach to net-zero building, Passive House structures are also considered to adhere to the most stringent energy standards in the world.
THC is not new to meeting the needs of the most vulnerable in different and innovative ways. The organization provides housing and support services to more than 500 formerly homeless and low-income families so they can make their own transformational life changes. THC offers holistic support through employment services, housing counseling, and resident and clinical services. Located in six of the eight wards in D.C., THC properties include award-winning transitional, permanent, supportive, rapid rehousing and affordable rental housing for those looking to end the cycle of homelessness.
Weinberg Commons is yet another example of THC’s transformative methods in providing affordable housing to those who need it most. The community reflects former DC Mayor Vincent Gray’s twin vision of creating more environmentally sustainable buildings while delivering affordable housing more quickly. The project also complements the strategy to consolidate and synchronize the application process between city agencies and developers in order to produce affordable housing in less time. Weinberg Commons will combine state-of-the-art environmental features with affordable rents and a slate of support services for homeless families. This innovative endeavor will be the first of its kind in the District, and it will also model the successful integration of sustainability in affordable housing projects moving forward.
“We are addressing the District’s family homelessness crisis as we contribute to a greener city,” said Frank Demarais, THC’s Interim Executive Director in regards to THC’s commitment to Passive House development.
THC’s HAND membership has proven to be a valuable resource for the organization. As a multi-state/regional affordable housing and community development association, HAND provides a collective voice for affordable housing in the region. By bringing together lead agencies in the area and individuals in housing development, policy and financing, HAND provides THC leadership and staff access to the best thinking available in the industry. Through its trainings and dedication to supporting community housing providers, HAND is a go-to resource to help THC achieve its mission of ending family homelessness by 2020.
HAND is pleased to spotlight Transitional Housing Corporation, which certainly contributes to our organization’s COLLABORATION, INNOVATION and TRANSFORMATION within the metropolitan area!