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Galen Terrace in Washington, D.C.
Breaking New Ground By Going Green

Photo Credit: Lloyd Wolf

Wendy Hursey's home, Galen Terrace Apartments, was once identified as one of the most troubled properties in Washington, D.C due to high criminal activity and physical deterioration. But she was determined not to be forced from her home. Led by Wendy and two other courageous residents, Yashonia Mallory and Robin Farewell, the Galen Terrace Tenants Association exercised its right of first purchase under D.C. law to acquire their Section 8 property and make substantial improvements.

The Tenants Association chose National Housing Trust/Enterprise Preservation Corporation and Somerset Development Company as their development partners. NHT/Enterprise helped the tenant association purchase the property while making substantial renovations. These renovations, coupled with new management and resident services, have turned GalenTerrace from a trouble spot into a neighborhood asset.

Breaking New Ground

Galen Terrace was the first rehabilitated property in D.C. to meet all of the "green" criteria under the Enterprise Green Communities Initiative. Moreover, it's the first Section 8 building to be rehabilitated under Enterprise's Green Communities program. Environmentally friendly features include low volatile organic compound paints, primers, sealants, and adhesives, Energy Star appliances and lighting, solar reflective roofing material, double-paned windows, and water barrels to collect and reuse rain water for landscaping.

Rain barrels at Galen Terrace to collect and reuse rain water.

Safeguarding Affordable Homes and Residents’ Health
The U.S. Attorney’s office had identified Galen Terrace as among the top nuisance properties in the city, reporting significant drug and criminal activity. In consultation with HUD, the US Attorney, residents and security consultants, we integrated technology, building and site improvements, on-site management and on the ground patrols to bring a real sense of security back to the property. The property renovation includes better lighting, secure key card building entry systems, and surveillance cameras.

Property at a Glance


Location: Washington, DC


Development Team: National Housing Trust/ Enterprise Preservation Corporation and Somerset Development Company.


Total Units: 84

Project Awards:

  • 2008: Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers “Best Project in Washington, DC”
  • 2008: Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Awards “Best Urban Project” Honorable Mention
  • 2007: Enterprise Communities Partners, Inc. “Enterprise Green Communities Designation”

Financing Sources:

  • Low Income Housing Tax Credits
  • Tax Exempt Private Activity Bonds
  • Federal Home Loan Bank and Enterprise Predevelopment Loans
  • DC DHCD Subordinated Debt
  • 20 Year Section 8 Contract
  • Enterprise Green Communities Grant

Green Improvements:

  • Energy Star Appliances and Lighting
  • Solar Reflective Roofing
  • Water Barrels to Reuse Rain Water for Landscaping
  • Energy Efficient Windows
  • Low VOC Primers, Sealants, and Paints

Resident Services:

  • Playground Built from Recycled Material
  • New Community Center
  • New Computer Lab
  • Improved Security Including Better Lighting and Surveillance Cameras