From left, Shelley Murphy, CEO Wesley Housing Development Corporation, Tom Fleetwood, Director of the Department of Housing and Community Development Fairfax County and Cynthia Bailey, Deputy County Attorney Fairfax County provide remarks at the Town of Herndon's Planning Commission.
Photo by Sheila Olem
On Sept. 5, I attended the Town of Herndon Planning Commission Special Work Session on the Preservation and Enhancement of Herndon's Housing Diversity moderated by Planning Commission Chair C. Melissa Jonas. The panel of experts discussed housing diversity and focused on the ranges of price and age-appropriate housing available in the town. Town staff gave an overview of existing inventory noting the range of housing types, cost and age for both sales and rental properties.
I found it very interesting that approximately 52 percent of the current housing in Herndon was built before 1980 with 41 percent built in the 1970s, the most significant decade of housing production in the town.
Given some of our housing stock is in need of replacement due to the quality of construction, we, as a community, need to take a hard look at our future and options. All the new homes, townhomes and condominiums are out of reach for most first-time buyers and renters. According to the panel, the cost of housing should only be about one-third of the family’s income. This will ensure stability and health needs are met for the children to be able to perform successfully at school.
As the town considers rezoning the areas on South Elden Street, as well as what the Herndon Transit-Oriented Core (HTOC) might contain, we have an opportunity to create a diverse range of housing costs in the town. This will ensure we will have housing for the service workforce needed after the Metrorail arrives in Herndon.
For a copy of the two PowerPoint presentations shared at the 09/05/18 Town of Herndon Planning Commission Special Work Session, please send me an email and I will forward it appropriately. Email: Sheila.Olem@herndon-va.gov
You can watch the meeting from home by visiting http://www.herndon-va.gov/government/mayor-town-council/agendas-minutes-webcasts. Click on "Herndon Planning Commission Special Work Session 09/05/18".