If those walls could talk, the bricks of the former Lorton Reformatory would likely express surprise.

What was once an overcrowded, violent penitentiary for prisoners from the District is now a desirable suburban development — and in the midst of becoming a thriving urban village.

After 91 years of housing D.C. inmates, before closing in 2001, and being returned to Fairfax County, Virginia, developers of Liberty are proudly heralding Lorton prison’s before and after:

“The unique community incorporates the historic campus into a modern development that includes loft-style apartments, distinguished single-family and townhomes, well-curated retail and restaurants, and collaborative office spaces.”

The Liberty development, in Lorton, Virginia, incorporates many of the historic buildings and facades — including several guard towers — from what was the Lorton Reformatory, into a modern, suburban development.


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Originally published by WTOP News.