CAPTION: Picture 1, New housing in Old Alexandria includes the Tannery Yard Townhouses; Picture 2, Centennial Row Townhouses; Picture 3, Brockett's Crossing; Picture 4, And the Gallery rental Apartments with an Atrium created in a converted church, Photos by James Thresher, The Washington Post Picture 5, Recently used as a garage, this former manufacturing building at Prince and Fairfax streets in Alexandria is scheduled to be converted this year into a luxury condominium project called Green's Steam Furniture Works, By Larry Morris -- The Washington Post hin0: Alexandria, one of those places that almost automatically demands the adjective "historic," has long been identified with structures known as Gadsby's Tavern, Carlyle House and Captain's Row, to mention a few. But recent years have been introducing a new strain of realty rehabilitation, redevelopment and new construction, with names that include Brockett's Crossing, Centennial Row, the Gallery, the Whale's Tale, Tannery Yard, Green's Steam Furniture Works and even Watergate (of Alexandria). Much of what now is being built and refashioned in Old Town (east of Washington Street to the river) and more recently in "Old Town West," (on that side of Washington Street) can be classified as smaller, smarter and expensive dwellings with courtyards, atriums or other landscaped amenities that provide exterior lebensraum and the sense of security that defined perimeters convey. Most of the new dwellings are clustered condominiums on one or two floors but others are more conventional larger townhouses or rental apartments. In fact, it is the broad mix of new dwellings that now turns a spotlight on what is happening in the city part of Alexandria. For instance, right on Washington Street the second phase of Brockett's Crossing will provide 34 more condominium townhouses and three small office buildings adjacent to the clustered groupf of townhouses that have been almost completely sold out on the adjacent site to the east. Prices of these two-story, two-bedroom dwellings developed by Ellsworth and Howell and built by W. R. Manchester are now in the low $80,000s and rising as sales advance. The stairways are narrow and winding but bed parts can be moved to the second level via a cutout-section of the kitchen roof under the back bedroom. The architect is the Michael-Michael firm, which also designed the nearly completed Centennial Row townhouses on a site at Prince and Payne streets on the west side of Washington Street. There the 11 new townhouses are priced in the $70s and selling ahead of delivery date. Both styles are traditional and heavy on brick. The firm of Minarin, Odle and Rector is the developer at Centennial Row. The next project of developers Samuel M. Ellsworth, John W. Howell and J. Michael Cramer will be Green's Steam Furniture Works, which will involve the transformation of a vintage 1823 wood manufacturing building and Civil War era military prison into luxury condominium apartments (16) with view of Old Town and an atrium featuring a brick and water sculpture designed by Jarbo Rolph. Eleven of the dwelling are already listed as sold. Most prices are in the $70,000s and $80,000s but the largest unit is $150,000. Occupancy is projected for November. This site is at the intersection of South Fairfax and Prince Streets. While most of the development interest in Alexandria has been sale-oriented, Eugene J. (Chick) Cullinane and his brother, Michael, have recently completed the transformation of an 1820s era church that was a night club in the 1960s and was closed a few years ago. Located at 207 S. Patrick (on the west side of Washington Street), this structure has been renamed the Gallery and now includes 23 small but modish apartments renting from $350 to $400. So far five leases have been signed but a full rent-up is predicted within 60 days. Cullinane said he bought the property at auction a few years ago; he estimates that he has invested $675,000 in addition to the $175,000 purchase price. A three-story atrium provides the impetus for the name Gallery and there are skylights, balconies, lofts and patios for tenants. Next door is a former rectory that Cullinane plans to transform into a small office building. A few years ago he created The Courts apartments behind a townhouse facade in the same area. Recent completions and virtual sellouts on South St. Asaph Street in Old Town include the 25-unit Tannery Yard townhouses done by Development Resources, Inc., for buyers in the $80,000-up bracket. And principal Roger Machanic said that he has plans for a nearby four-story luxury condominium apartment building to be called Tannery House. Another completed small development is the Whale's Tail, where a group of courtyard-oriented apartments on North St. Asaph need only one more buyer to be sold out in the low-$60,000s range. The brick courtyard offers privacy and walking room for owners of the small two-bedroom apartments. One of the features is a brick-enclosed repository of firewood that is regularly replenished for owners. Also coming up this year in Old Town will be a new complex of 46 cluster townhouses to be done by the Lawrence Brandt firm, which earlier added to the new townhouse stock in the north section near the river. The new site is at North Fairfax, Princess, Oronoco and Lee streets, where the dwellings will have a private pool and tennis court in the center of the block. Work has begun and summer deliveries are planned. The architect is VVKR. The three-story, "fee-simple" townhouses will have garages and be priced from about $75,000 for one-bed-room to $150,000 for three. And Crowell-Baker, another builder of Old Town townhouses in recent years, plans to be back with an early spring start on 18 luxury Carlyle Walk dwellings at North Pitt and Cameron streets near Gadsby's Tavern. Prices for the three-bedroom dwellings with garages will be near $150,000. Additionally, after years of waiting and site changing and down-zoning, the Watergate Improvement group is planning an early start on a site at North Royal and Pitt streets, where 150 luxury townhouses will be created on a former Alexandria school site that was traded for the waterfront site the city converted to a park. Watergate at Alexandria had been originally announced and planned as a riverfront high-rise. Meanwhile, Development Resources, Inc., also has two luxury townhouses under construction in the 200-block of North Lee, where the four-bedroom, three-fireplace residences will have gardens and price tags of $215,000 or more. The recent pace of conversions and new construction of mostly small and some larger residences in the city section of old Alexandria indicates that the strong record of resale appreciation and rentals of existing properties has stimulated developers to provide more new housing. Much of it is designed to take care of affluent young singles and couples. Coincidentally, new businesses have also sprung up in Old Town and have been fanning out from King to adjacent streets. Persons who see the new building pace in Alexandria city may appreciate the changes of the past decade with the realization that the opening of the Cameron Mews cluster of traditional townhouses on a courtyard did not excite a stampede of buyers a dozen years ago. But now there's a waiting list for any of those and some other fairly new townhouses that might come on the resale market at prices that have to seem absolutely fantastic to those who remember the original prices in the mid-1960s. Shortly John C. Williamson, veteran hand in Washington realty and housing affairs on Capitol Hill and now executive vice president of the Mortgage Insurance Companies of America here, has spoken up against recent efforts to revive FHA. He sees the move as "that battery of retired FHA mustangs trying to turn back the clock ten years when mortgage insurance was an exclusive province of the FHA," adding that he does not believe that the new President will see the government's proper role as one of competition with private enterprise "but rather one of concern and action in areas of the market not served by private industry." Williamson, in speaking for the private mortgage insurers, contends that the demise of FHA mortgage insurance was the direct result of the growth of the private mortgage insurance companies and to a lesser, but significant extent, the creation by Congress of authority for the Federal National Mortgage Association and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. to purchase conventional loans with as little as 5 per cent down provided they are insured by qualified MICs. Meanwhile, W. Beverley Mason Jr., now a housing consultant but formerly executive assistant to the FHA commissioner, has reported that the aforementioned Committee to Revitalize FHA has been broadened by the enlistments of three former FHA Commissioners. They include Neal J. Hardy, now a rehabilitation mortgage insurance executive in New York; Sheldon Lubar, now executive committee chairman of a bank in Milwaukee, and David J. Cook, now a consultant in Columbus, Ohio, for a bank in New York City. Hardy headed FHA in the Kennedy administration when the old-style FHA was in bloom but Lubar and Cook came along in the 1970s and stayed only long enough to recognize that the commissioner had insufficient authority "to properly operate the agency." A 10-year-old office building at 1211 Connecticut Ave. NW was sold recently for $5,786,000 to New 1211 Connecticut Inc., a group said to be include French investors. The seller was Connecticut General Life Insurance Co., which had earlier acquired the interest in the building held by developer Robert E. Morrison. Clarence Dodge Jr., a top official with Weaver Bros., recently sold a residence at 4020 Fordham Rd. NW to Nancy Zucker for $300,000. Dodge said that the new occupants of the large home are Mrs. Zucker, her husband (a medical doctor) and two children. Dodge and his wife had earlier purchased and moved into a smaller house on Palisade Lane in Northwest. D. Ross Jones, remembered here as the former marketing director of Multiplex, now is marketing administrator for Mondex, Inc., in Miami. But he has maintained ownership of the Tivoli townhouse that he and his family occupied in the Springfield area of Virginia. He recently told a Washington friend that the new tenant will be Baltazar Corrada del Rio, recently elected Puerto Rican resident commissioner here.