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Under the U.S. Army's Residential Communities Initiative, the Department of the Army (DA) and Fort Belvoir Residential Communities LLC formed a 50-year public-private partnership to develop, rehabilitate and construct 2,106 homes on 576 acres of U.S. Army Garrison Fort Belvoir located in Fairfax County, Virginia. The project commenced operations on December 1, 2003. Fort Belvoir Residential Communities LLC is a partnership which includes Clark Realty of Arlington, Virginia (Developer, General Contractor, and Asset Manager) and a third-party Property Manager.

The 2,106 homes are currently located in 14 villages throughout the 8,656 acres of land that comprise Fort Belvoir. The initial development plan, spanning eight years, includes the demolition and replacement of 1,190 homes and the renovation of 696 homes (170 historically significant) on Fort Belvoir.

 
 
 

The land planning principles that were established during the design of the villages at Belvoir focused on one main standard - create an environmentally friendly community for military families

In order to accomplish this design intent, numerous features were integrated into the villages to encourage people to get out of their homes and meet those living around them. Every village contains a large green space with central mail kiosks and playgrounds. The homes themselves are pushed closer to the street and garages are loaded from rear alleyways to hide automobiles. Further, the streetscape is accentuated with wide sidewalks, front porches, stoops, and street trees. This compact neighborhood design promotes the military families at Fort Belvoir to interact with each other in their communities and allows their children to play in a safe environment.

Along with other community amenities programmed into the design of the villages at Fort Belvoir such as playgrounds, basketball courts, picnic pavilions, a skate park, and an outdoor pool, there are five neighborhood centers and a resident Welcome Center within walking distance. The Welcome Center is located in the Village Commons at Belvoir, the first town center on a Department of Defense installation. Anchoring the “green” initiative at Fort Belvoir, the town center provides residents a walkable retail destination, therefore reducing automobile usage on the base.

 


Streetscape view in Herryford Village at Fort Belvoir


Village Commons at Fort Belvoir


Village Green in Herryford Village at Fort Belvoir


Stormwater Management Pond in Park Village

 

Not only does the land planning design of the villages introduce smarth growth and new urbanism principles, but great environmental emphasis is also placed on the construction that occurs long before families move in.

The main objective is to reduce the development footprint through sustainable civil design

Through the use of bio-retention ponds, extended detention basins, stormwater filters, and other erosion and sediment controls, the stormwater management practices throughout the villages go beyond code requirements. There is less water leaving the site and therefore less phosphorous and other compounds flowing into the surrounding streams and eventually into the Potomac River after a rainfall.

Existing vegetation is also protected and restored throughout the project’s construction. Over 1,000 trees have been saved since the project began, and upon completion, more than 4,000 trees will have been added.

 
 

By placing emphasis on energy efficient home construction, the project is helping protect the environment as well as proving military families at Fort Belvoir a beautiful home in a sustainable community

Every new home that is built at Fort Belvoir is Energy STAR certified. This efficient design creates a tighter building envelope that reduces overall consumption. Certified by third party inspectors, more than 900 homes at Fort Belvoir have been qualified as Energy STAR. Some of the components that make a home Energy STAR are certified appliances, low-e windows, R-11 exterior walls, and a SEER 13 HVAC system. Additionally, every home is equipped with compact fluorescent light bulbs that drastically reduce energy consumption and generate utility savings over the life of the bulb.

 

New Home in George Washington Village

More than 900 homes at Fort Belvoir have been qualified as Energy STAR


New Neighborhood Center in George Washington Village

Fort Belvoir's fourth neighborhood center, while maintaining the form and function of the previous three, will be the "greenest" building on the base. Energy-saving features such as a geothermal heat system, photovoltaic solar panels, and efficient lighting controls will help contribute to this eco-friendly structure.

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Throughout the villages at Fort Belvoir, five neighborhood centers are planned to be built as an amenity to the community. Three have been built to date. These neighborhood centers are frequented by residents for large gatherings, parties, and meetings. Each month, the centers are reserved up to thirty times for various functions. In addition to serving the community needs, the Pinnacle property management offices and maintenance staff are located within the building. The 3,770 square foot neighborhood center’s program includes two property management offices with a reception desk and copy/fax room, a great room for larger social functions, conference room, kitchen, bathrooms, foyer, maintenance shed, patio/courtyard, playground, and surface parking lot.

With the completion of our most recent neighborhood center in George Washington Village, the design focus turned to the next one planned: the Fairfax Village Neighborhood Center. The project team decided to top all other sustainable efforts at Fort Belvoir and showcase this next neighborhood center as the “greenest” possible building. A team of consultants came together and kicked off the design charrette. Among members of the project team were Sustainable Design Consultanting (LEED Consultant), Torti Gallas & Partners (Architect), Bowman Consulting Group (Civil Engineer), E.K. Fox & Associates (MEP), HOK (Interior Designer), Parker Rodriguez (Landscape Architect), Wetlands Studies & Solutions (Environmental Consultant), and Fort Belvoir environmental personnel from the Army. On the ownership side of the project, members of Clark Pinnacle team also contributed to this early green vision.

This website will help tell the this project’s story and begin to educate not only the residents at Fort Belvoir that will use this facility, but also the general public about sustainability and green building.

 

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