There's a community room with board games and a large TV set; the fireplace room offers another area for quiet discussions or group activities. Even though there are organized activities, including crafts shows and bingo nights, most of the gatherings in the room are informal, just people getting out of their rooms to see each other, said Marti Aqui, property manager.
An outing by the Four O'Clock Walking Group is one of these informal get-togethers, and on a sunny Friday in February, three women are taking part in the exercise ritual. Theresa Lewis, 70, the walking group's leader for the day, epitomizes the typical Fairbrooke resident.
She collects Social Security, which is supplemented with the interest generated by funds from the house she sold in Gardenville.
Lewis can get around easily, so she doesn't require assisted-living facilities, where meals, housekeeping and other services are provided by a facility staff for a fee, and she doesn't have health problems requiring her to live in a nursing home. But she doesn't have enough money to qualify for a retirement community.
Her one-bedroom apartment in Fairbrooke was the perfect answer to her needs, she said.
"It's really nice, and there are people there for me to be around," Lewis said, while walking north on Middleton Road, the first leg of the trip to the grocery story.
"We know there's a need for this type of housing, but it would be hard to do without the tax credits, which makes the formulas work," said Ginsburg.
He began his career as a specialist in low- and moderate-income housing for the Ford Foundation, a program sponsored by the James W. Rouse Mortgage Co., and as a development coordinator for subsidized housing programs using Section 8, FHA and HUD Section 202 financing.
As Lemon is talking in the community room, Viola Blevins, 77, walks in. After living in Rosedale, near her family in the Cherry Tree Apartments, where it was noisy and not geared to seniors, Blevins moved to Fairbrooke last summer.
"I knew I was at home when I first came here," said Blevins, who takes part in the crafts and health fairs, the bingo games and all sorts of other activities. She's been seen recently with a male suitor, whose name she won't divulge.
"When everyone came in here, we were all strangers, but now we are all friends, all of us," Blevins said.
"And that's because we are all the same here, and that helps."
Pub Date: 3/01/98