Housing Commission Breaks Ground on Thayer Avenue Project

Screenshot of the Fenton Street frontage of the 900 Thayer Ave. plans from document submitted to the Planning Board.

After several months of preliminary excavation work, the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County officially broke ground last week on its project at 900 Thayer Ave.

Plans call for development of 124 mixed-income units, with studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments, and ground-level retail.

Eighty-four of those units will serve as relocation housing for former public housing residents through the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Rental Assistance Demonstration program, according to an HOC press release.

“Thanks to HUD’s Rental Assistance Demonstration program, 84 families from former public housing units will benefit from the connections that come from living in downtown Silver Spring—recognized by Harvard academics as a leading community for offering low-income children a real opportunity to change their life’s economic trajectory. 900 Thayer will act as the nexus between families and the critical services and resources that help them move toward their definition of success,” said Stacy Spann, HOC executive director, in the release.

“If we can keep that key ingredient, that Silver Spring is a diverse community where everyone has a place, then that is the recipe for success, not only for Silver Spring, but for Montgomery County,” said County Council President Hans Riemer (D-At Large) during the groundbreaking ceremony.

According to plans approved last fall by the Planning Board, the construction will include a picnic/sitting area, indoor community space, a fitness facility and an upper courtyard, with streetscaping along Thayer Avenue and Fenton Street, and a storm water management system.

“The investment of approximately $34 million in hard construction and construction-related costs for the project will result in nearly $53 million total economic output in Montgomery County,” The Concourse Group, LLC, HOC’s development adviser for the mixed-income housing development, wrote in a press release.

The company said the work would create approximately 326 jobs (direct, indirect and induced) and generate an estimated $976,278 in tax revenue for the county, as well as $2.1 million and $4.4 million in state and federal taxes.

The project is scheduled to be completed in August 2019.

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