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1942–1944, Kenneth Franzheim and Alan Balch Mills. I-395 (Shirley Hwy.), S. Abingdon St., S. 28th St., Quaker Ln., and VA 7 (King St.), Arlington

Encompassing 322 acres and containing 3,449 apartment and town house units, two community center buildings, a maintenance building, a real estate office, and outdoor recreation areas, Fairlington is the largest of the Defense Homes Corporation's World War II housing projects for defense workers and their families. Many of Fairlington's original residents worked at the Pentagon and the Navy Annex, about two and one-half miles northwest. Straddling both sides of the Shirley Highway, Fairlington's layout follows the already developing northern Virginia tradition, seen at nearby Colonial and Buckingham villages, of garden apartments in a generic Colonial Revival idiom set within ample green space and trees, accessible by curving roads. A variety of housing forms with different-shaped roofs give some individual distinction. Kenneth Franzheim, the architect in charge, had designed large commercial buildings in Houston and New York before working on defense housing. Alan B. Mills, the local associate, had worked in the Office of the Supervising Architect of the Treasury, and then for the Public Buildings Administration. Construction, by the Thompson-Starrett Company of New York, took a little over eighteen months. Sold to a private developer in 1947, the complex was turned into condominiums in 1972–1977. Today the generic names of Village, Mews, Arbor, Meadows, Glen, Green, and Common have been added to the name of Fairlington to distinguish the different parts.

Writing Credits

Richard Guy Wilson et al.


What's Nearby


Richard Guy Wilson et al., "Fairlington", [Arlington, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Virginia: Tidewater and Piedmont, Richard Guy Wilson and contributors. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002, 49-50.

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