Fort Belvoir Relocation Information
Welcome to Fort Belvoir!
Image via Fort Belvoir MWR
Among the military bases surrounding Washington, D.C., Fort Belvoir is the largest in size and population due to BRAC changes initiated in 2005. Although the Army operates Fort Belvoir, representation from more than 145 mission partners includes all other branches of the military and dozens of federal entities. This makes up a population of 245,000 who live and work on Fort Belvoir.
Fort Belvoir’s location is unique in that it highlights the roots of American history, not only because it rests on the land of indigenous settlers (the Douge Indians), but its intertwined relationship with Washington, D.C. (about 15 miles) and President George Washington’s home on the Potomac River, Mount Vernon (about 5 miles).
Because of its ideal location and distinct seasons, Fort Belvoir and surrounding area residents have access to year round adventures in Virginia, Washington D.C., and Maryland that include river, bay, and ocean excursions, cultural activities of every kind and sporting events; not to mention government and historic buildings to tour.
You won’t get bored in D.C.! Tourists visit from across the globe to see the sights. You’ll find something for everyone: festivals, museums, food, wine, and sports. Major events like the Cherry Blossom Festival, Marine Corps Marathon, and National Christmas Tree Lighting require advance planning.
Read local publications like the Washingtonian, The D.C. Patch, and military family Facebook groups to stay up to date with activities. Like the pace in D.C., everything moves quickly. Realize that attractions like the iconic Smithsonian museums easily take weeks to explore. Plan well in advance for visits to the White House or Pentagon.
Those who live near Fort Belvoir also find plenty of recreation outlets within a 2-3 hour drive in neighboring West Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Moving to Fort Belvoir? Download your free guide to the area now!
Frequently Asked Questions about Fort Belvoir
1) What does the term DMV mean?
Fort Belvoir is located in the collective area known as the DMV (D.C./Maryland/Virginia). The term National Capital Region (NCR) and Northern Virginia (NOVA) are also used to describe Fort Belvoir’s location.
2) Where do the families who are stationed at Fort Belvoir live?
Everywhere! Commute is king around Fort Belvoir. Families live as far north as Maryland and move south 40-50 miles toward Fredericksburg, Virginia, to maximize real estate dollars. Immediately outside of Fort Belvoir’s gates lie the most common cities to live in: Alexandria, Arlington, Springfield, Burke, Woodbridge, and Lorton.
It's very common for dual military families to choose one of these cities between their two different duty stations to equal out the commute times. Drivable options around Fort Belvoir include the Pentagon, Fort Meade NSA, Walter Reed, Joint Base Andrews, and Quantico Marine Corps Base.
Street view in nearby Washington, D.C.
3) Where do Fort Belvoir Kids go to school?
Fort Belvoir is part of Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS). Younger kids are assigned to Fort Belvoir Upper and Lower elementary schools, which are on base. Middle schoolers are officially assigned Walt Whitman Middle School, and high school kids attend Mount Vernon High School. However, many families take advantage of the opportunities to attend other nearby schools if space allows.
Homeschool families have a strong presence on Fort Belvoir, and there are plenty of private school options within reasonable driving distance.
4) How many gates access Fort Belvoir?
There are 6 gates that lead onto Fort Belvoir: Tulley, Lieber, J.J. Kingman, Pence Telegraph, and Farrar Gate (Davison Army Airfield). The Visitor Center is located at Tulley Gate. Lieber Gate and Farrar Gate are open 24 hours, 7 days a week.
Military Installations Near Fort Belvoir
Base Location and Information
Fort Belvoir comprises North Post (area near the commissary), South Post (area near Town Center), and Davison Army Airfield.
Fort Belvoir Map from Ft. Belvoir Family and MWR
The majority of Fort Belvoir’s amenities such as the commissary and Exchange are either newly built in the last five years, or have been updated or remodeled extensively, which makes their usage extremely popular, not only for residents but for nearby military families, veterans, and retirees. The same is true for community resources such as the leisure ticket office and food outlets.
Fort Belvoir’s prime location offers the best qualities of various types of lifestyles. Nearly adjacent to the I-95 Corridor, the base has direct routes to major Eastern Seaboard cities such as New York City, Philadelphia, and Boston, which are all within a day's drive.
Because the greater Washington, D.C. area is dotted with military installations and encompasses not only the District but also Maryland and Virginia, it’s difficult for newcomers to grasp the geography and understand how base locations affect living conditions, especially when it pertains to traffic and commute times.
For simplicity’s sake, the major military presences are categorized by relationship to The Beltway. The Beltway is also known as Interstate 495, the highway that circles Washington, D.C. and the inner suburbs of adjacent Maryland and Virginia.
The location is also readily accessible to mountain activities, as the Shenandoah National Park is just 2 hours away to the west. Beach lovers take heart; miles and miles of coastline is accessible from Delaware down to Southern Virginia in 2-3 hours.
If driving isn’t ideal, one of the three major airports in the region, Reagan National, Baltimore Washington International, and Dulles International, offer thousands of domestic and international flights. Similarly, Amtrak is a reliable travel source and is often cheaper or comparable to a flight.
View of Fort Belvoir Community Hospital from the air.
Washington, D.C.’s Metro train and bus service is a significant transportation source for the Fort Belvoir region. Popular train stops include Huntington, King Street, Eisenhower, Van Dorn, and Braddock Station.
The cost of living in popular suburbs of Washington D.C. and Fort Belvoir is very high in comparison to traditional military towns. Newcomers are often surprised that a cost of living allowance (COLA) isn’t provided and that it’s very challenging to stay under BAH payments in the most desired neighborhoods, which is why base living remains popular.
Alexandria is the most well known city near Fort Belvoir, and many families find homes that fit their needs. Keep in mind that there are actually two Alexandrias. One is the City of Alexandria, and the second is Alexandria, Fairfax County. Other than the name, they are completely separate entities. Each has an independent governing and school system. This is particularly important to remember when reviewing school choices.
Download your free guide about the Alexandria area:
Fort Belvoir offers on-base lodging through IHG Army Hotels.
To make reservations, visit the IHG Army Hotel site or call 1-877-711-TEAM.
Fort Belvoir Housing
Fort Belvoir Residential Communities LLC offers privatized military housing on Fort Belvoir and is managed by The Michaels Organization. Fifteen housing villages provide homes ranging from three to five bedrooms to service members of all branches. The on post Town Center is a hub of retail outlets including Starbucks and Domino’s Pizza. Community members also have access to neighborhood gyms, pools, playgrounds, and sponsored entertainment.
Family Housing Welcome Center
5994 12th Street, Fort Belvoir, VA 22060
phone (888) 740-9851
fax (703) 619-3878
Mon-Fri: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Fort Belvoir Resident Portal
Housing News & Resources
Fort Belvoir Off-Post Housing
Homes in Alexandria, Virginia
Near Fort Belvoir, choosing an off-base home often comes down to ranking and balancing personal preferences as associated with budget, commute, and school accessibility. Your family’s priorities will determine the best location to search for a home. In most cases, you can expect to pay premium prices for homes for sale and rent that are zoned for top schools or have very convenient commutes. Homes with larger property sizes and smaller price tags, have longer commute times.
Commuting routes are challenging near Fort Belvoir. Although many places of work and home destinations are less than 15 miles in distance, at peak traffic hours, it's not uncommon for drive times to measure beyond one hour and more.
Military families searching for homes should be aware that although stand alone single family homes are the most popular, townhouse, condo, and apartment living are all comparative options. For example, some neighborhoods only cater to those interested in town homes, and single family homes aren't available.
For military families arriving in the D.C. area, it’s highly recommended to consult a qualified real estate agent knowledgeable about rental properties and home sales in your desired area. It’s common for agents to be licensed in DC/MD/VA, but some choose only to work in one or two states or the District.
Washington, D.C. real estate can be a challenge for first-timers. Both property and money move quickly and often in cash transactions. Unless PCS’ing from other expensive locations such as San Diego or Hawaii, you’ll want to prepare savings accounts to adjust to rental and home buying costs.
There isn’t a shortage of neighborhoods to choose from! Each has a unique setting, feel, vibe, and pro/con list. It’s up to you and your real estate agent to research the vicinity to choose the perfect match.
Area Weather & Climate
Cherry Blossoms and the Jefferson Memorial via Ron Cogswell
Fort Belvoir’s weather patterns include a little bit of just about every phenomenon: cold winters with an occasional blizzard, a blustery and wet spring season, very humid and hot summers, with the potential for hurricane residue from the coast, and a colorful but temperate and short lived fall season.
Summer: July high is around 87 degrees.
Winter: January low is around 28 degrees.
Rain: About 43 inches of rain per year.
Snow: About 14 inches of snow per year.
Get ready to go shopping! In and around the National Capital Region, you’re going to need all the gear, from shorts and bug spray to shovels and winter boots. The good news is that if a heat wave or cold front sets in, you can expect it to head out in a week or two.
- Weather forecasters often use I-95 as a dividing line to describe transitioning weather.
- Areas north and west of D.C. take on weather from the Shenandoah Mountains.
- East of the city, weather is influenced by coastal weather patterns.
Fort Belvoir Area Schools
Via Fairfax County Public Schools
Fairfax County Public Schools serves students that reside on and around Fort Belvoir. The school system is the 10th largest in the country and educates 188,000 students each year. These stats can be intimidating for families who are used to smaller school sizes, but FCPS offers highly sought-after specialized learning opportunities throughout the system, including language immersion, AAP, AP, IB, ESOL, fine and performing arts, STEAM, and special education classes, just to name a few programs.
Because Fort Belvoir’s educational opportunities are so vast and varied, it’s important to make contact with the Fort Belvoir Student Liaison Officer (SLO) to ensure the right educational track for your child, whether public or private. The SLO answers questions about transfer credits, curricula, and specialty programs.
Families who choose homeschooling often participate in Fort Belvoir Homeschoolers and Belvoir Home Educators. FCPS offers homeschooling families opportunities to attend public school campus classes on a part time basis.
Private schools in the Fort Belvoir area include: Saint Louis Catholic School, Bishop Ireton, Montessori School of Alexandria, The River Farm Cooperative School, Metropolitan School of the Arts, Browne Academy, Burgundy Farm Country Day School, and Episcopal High School.
Support for Military and Families
There is much support for military families on and around Fort Belvoir. The Washington, D.C., area is inundated with entities that provide support systems of various types. From employment to education and recreation, there is a group eager to share opportunities with military families. Some recognizable names include: Military Officers Association of America, National Military Family Association, Hiring Our Heroes, and Blue Star Families.
Fort Belvoir is also exceptionally connected to helpful organizations including the USO Metro and Fisher House. Fort Belvoir offers its own employment readiness programs through the MWR, in addition to continuing education guidance through the Barden Education Center.
Some more helpful links:
More Fort Belvoir Area Info