The Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) recently joined Fairfax County leaders and community members to celebrate the opening of the Community Center in Lee District. The days’ festivities highlighted a dynamic hub of activity with programs, services, and opportunities for recreation, technology literacy, and workforce development.
“We are so proud to have been in a position to execute the purchase of this community asset and to finance the initial upgrades and improvements to make this a safe, dynamic, and suitable environment for an amazing array of opportunities to be delivered to this community,” said the FCRHA’s Lee District Commissioner, Nicholas McCoy. “The delivery of this facility is an exceptional example of the benefits that can come with public housing authorities and local governments work together to build communities of opportunity.”
In May 2020, the FCRHA, in coordination with Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay, Lee District Supervisor Rodney Lusk and the Fairfax County Department of Neighborhood and Community Services (NCS), purchased the Mount Vernon Athletic Club. The 50,000 square-foot membership-only tennis club closed its doors after nearly 50 years and the FCRHA seized the opportunity to purchase the facility to provide a platform for a variety of programs and services to benefit the surrounding community which had historically been underserved.
Supervisor Lusk, NCS and the FCRHA shared an amazing vision to transform the former athletic club into a classroom, multi-sport athletic complex, fitness center, maker space, technology lab, hangout, and workforce development center,” continued Commissioner McCoy. “I’ve never seen a place with more diverse opportunities – and this is only the beginning.”
At the event, dozens of children, youth, and parents were able to sample several of the opportunities the center will offer including soccer, basketball, experimenting with 3-D pens, drones, art, and other activities.
In addition to facilitating the purchase of the facility the FCRHA provided financing to implement essential upgrades to the property in order to transfer ownership to Fairfax County to begin serving as a community center. The improvements included upgrades to mechanical, plumbing, fire safety, security, and electrical systems; accessibility enhancements; connectivity and refinishing several individual spaces; and converting several of the tennis courts into multi-sport surfaces. The project earned the FCRHA the 2021 Community Development Award of Excellence from the National Association for County, Community, and Economic Development.
A Special Thank you to:
Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeffery C. McKay Lee District Supervisor Rodney Lusk Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development Fairfax County Department of Neighborhood and Community Services Fairfax County Department of Planning and Development Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services Fairfax County Facilities Management Department Office of the County Attorney Blue Heron Leadership Group Grimm and Parker Architects HITT Contracting, Inc.