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Senior housing now complete near GMU, helping county’s affordable housing goal

Eighty new affordable homes for seniors have become available just east of George Mason University.

Located at 10055 Braddock Road, Ilda’s Overlook Senior Residences serves individuals aged 62 and over with incomes at or below 60% of the area median, developer Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing (APAH) said in a press release.

Erickson Senior Living chose APAH as its affordable housing partner in 2019 for the redevelopment of the former Northern Virginia Training Center, which closed in 2016.

The developers broke ground on the $31.5 million development in late 2022. The development was primarily funded through Low-Income Housing Tax Credits awarded by Virginia Housing, along with loans from various other public and private entities.

The completion of Ida’s Overlook furthers Fairfax County’s progress toward its goal of adding 10,000 affordable homes by 2034. Earlier this month, officials announced that approximately 4,000 affordable homes have been built, are in the planning stages, or are currently under construction.

“The delivery of Ilda’s Overlook puts us at almost 1,000 new, affordable homes delivered since January of 2020,” Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay said in the release. “By the end of the calendar year, we will be close to 1,500 new homes. This is great progress and  demonstrates that affordable housing belongs in all corners of Fairfax County, and across all generations.”

The new apartment complex’s name — Ilda’s Overlook — pays homage to a community established by two formerly enslaved blacksmiths, Moses Parker and Horace Gibson. After the Civil War, Gibson bought 5 acres of land near Guinea Road and the Little River Turnpike that developed into a vibrant, integrated neighborhood.

The community took on the name of Gibson’s daughter Matilda, who was nicknamed Ilda, according to APAH.

“One of APAH’s core values is racial equity, and we lead with this lens. It’s exciting to honor local history while we build for the future and strive for a more inclusive region,” APAH President and CEO Carmen Romero said in the release. “Ilda’s Overlook is thoughtfully designed for independent seniors to age in place, foster social connections, and build a sense of community.”

Ilda’s Overlook features a range of amenities, including in-unit washers and dryers, free Wi-Fi access for all residents, communal gathering areas, a fitness studio, wellness suites and community gardens. Additionally, the development is equipped with rooftop solar panels.

“Ilda’s Overlook Senior Residences provides much needed affordable housing for older
adults in the Braddock District,” Braddock District Supervisor James Walkinshaw said in the release. “This beautiful property is one of many recently opened or under development across the County — all with the goal of improving the availability of high-quality affordable housing to older adults.”

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