Richmond is home to The Faison School, a widely acclaimed and recognized leader in the field of education for people with autism. Now, ground has broken on the Faison Residence, the first apartment complex on the east coast to house exclusively those with autism and their caretakers.
The Faison Residence will be located next to the school, on the corner of West Broad Street and Byrd Avenue. The project will cost an estimated $15 million and will consist of 45 apartments. There will be one, two and three bedroom apartments for individuals with autism. Two thirds of the apartments will house teachers, nursing assistants and other professionals.
"We believe The Faison Residence has the potential to be a model living environment that is safe, comfortable and promotes the greatest independence possible,” said Louis Hagopian, Ph.D., and Michael F. Cataldo, Ph.D., of the Kennedy Krieger Institute at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD. The residence was developed by a team of experts from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, the University of Kansas in Lawrence, KS, along with other organizations and autism advocacy groups across North America.
This revolutionary “living learning environment” is designed to give young adults with developmental disabilities the opportunity to model and practice positive life skills, according to The Faison School website.
Once finished, the Faison Residence will be the leading role model in caring for the needs of the growing population of those with autism.
For more information about The Faison Residence or the Faison School, check out their website: www.thefaisonschool.org.