Addressing regional issues of housing affordability in Loudoun has proven challenging in recent years. On March 6, 2018, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors took a major step towards diversifying the county’s housing choices by approving a rezoning and special exception to create a vibrant mixed-use, mixed-income community in the Ashburn area.
Known as “Regency At Belmont Chase,” the approval permits construction of 34,000 square feet of commercial uses, 105 active adult age-restricted four-story townhomes, and between 75 and 100 affordable workforce dwelling units (AWDUs) on 26 acres at the intersection of Route 7 and Claiborne Parkway.
Regency At Belmont Chase was proposed by Toll Brothers in conjunction with a Middleburg-based non-profit affordable housing provider, Good Works LP. The project’s new urbanist design offers an urban, pedestrian-friendly, and mixed-use focal point at the intersection of three major roads. Substantial landscaping is proposed throughout the site, while a series of plazas and civic spaces are strategically located at entrances, focal points, and between proposed buildings.
Toll’s 105 active adult townhomes will help address Loudoun’s increasing need for a sustainable supply of long-term age-restricted housing and will feature elevators, rooftop terraces, and universal design elements. The proposed commercial uses will offer additional quality dining and retail experiences similar to those in the highly-successful Belmont Chase shopping center across Claiborne Parkway.
Good Works anticipates constructing the AWDUs pursuant to Virginia Housing Development Authority financing programs, and including them in one or two buildings which will be LEED (or equivalent rating system) certified. While the AWDUs units will be reserved for households meeting certain income eligibility requirements, they will be marketed to all age ranges. With approximately 48 percent of the total number of approved units dedicated towards affordable housing, the project represents perhaps the largest single commitment to affordable housing in Loudoun’s history.
Regency at Belmont Chase also provides substantial recreational amenities, tree conservation areas, open space preservation, stormwater management, green infrastructure, and transportation improvements and contributions that will help complete the nearby transportation network. The project will make the county’s housing options more affordable and diverse, as well as encourage compatibility among adjacent uses.
Walsh Colucci shareholder Andrew Painter served as zoning counsel on the case, and worked closely with Packie Crown of Bowman Consulting, Ltd. on the project.