On June 8, Carpenter’s Shelter will temporarily relocate to the former Macy’s at Landmark Mall to begin a major property redevelopment project known as New Heights. The staff, volunteers, and approximately 60 residents will participate in the relocation. Carpenter’s Shelter will remain open and continue to offer all of its current services during the 18-month relocation.

The temporary location is similar in size to the current building and interior renovations ensure access to similar spaces such as individual and family rooms, David’s Place day shelter for the chronically homeless, bathrooms, laundry facilities, common spaces, administrative offices, and more. Unlike the current building, the temporary location does not have a full commercial kitchen. Instead, a warming station has a warming cabinet and a microwave.

New Heights Carpenter's Shelter rendering (courtesy image)

Once the current building—a retrofitted Department of Motor Vehicles office located at 930 North Henry Street in Old Town, Alexandria—is vacant, it will be demolished so that a new, seven-story building can be built in its place. Opening in 2020, the new building will house a brand new purpose-built shelter, an underground parking garage, and 97 affordable apartments with 10 permanent supportive housing apartments for people who had been chronically homeless. Carpenter’s Shelter will operate the shelter and provide services to the 10 permanent supportive housing apartments. Redevelopment partner Alexandria Housing Development Corporation will own and operate the 97 affordable apartments, which will make up an apartment complex named The Bloom.

By creating a new stock of affordable apartments, the New Heights property redevelopment project addresses the issue of housing affordability, a major barrier to ending homelessness in Alexandria. The new building was designed to fit architecturally with the rest of the area and the redevelopment plan complies with the intentions and guidelines outlined in the Braddock Metro Neighborhood Plan.

The relocation phase of New Heights is made possible thanks to a collaborative partnership with Landmark Mall owners, The Howard Hughes Corporation®, which remains an active participant in ever-evolving renovation process. The Howard Hughes Corporation has leased part of the former Macy’s site to Carpenter’s Shelter, providing the opportunity for Carpenter’s Shelter to take advantage of the unutilized mall site while its own facility is redeveloped and while The Howard Hughes Corporation’s redevelopment of the Macy’s site is in the planning phase.

“We greatly value the significant work for which Carpenter’s Shelter is known and share its commitment to forward-thinking, innovative solutions for issues facing our communities today,” says Mark Bulmash, Senior Vice President of Development at The Howard Hughes Corporation. “Our dedication to responsible placemaking is based upon a thoughtful consideration of the variety of offerings and services that contribute to making a vibrant community succeed and thrive. We are pleased to have the opportunity to contribute the use of the Landmark space for such a worthwhile cause and we thank the City of Alexandria, Carpenter’s Shelter, and Seritage Growth Properties for working with us on this important initiative.”

“We find our partnership with the Howard Hughes Corporation to be an inspiring one and hope that different businesses can benefit from this new model of doing good by working together to solve problems,” says Shannon Steene, Executive Director at Carpenter’s Shelter. “Our relationship with The Howard Hughes Corporation is founded on a shared commitment to being strong corporate citizens here in Alexandria and enhancing the quality of life our communities”