Several changes were recommended upon conclusion of our review of APCHA’s housing program. The City of Aspen, Pitkin County and APCHA have been active in providing housing affordable for the workforce since the 1970’s when it was apparent that, absent some more affordable options, community members would be quickly priced out of the housing market.
Implementing a key strategy recommended in our recent housing needs assessment, the Town of Winter Park hired a housing coordinator to help the town implement its new housing goals. We are excited to see Winter Park put our research into action and work to provide much needed housing for its workforce, residents, employers and community.
The Town of Estes Park, Colorado, is putting our work into action. We LOVE our research to be used by communities. We design our reports to be used – and provide clear direction on next steps communities should take to do so. We are very excited that Estes Park is taking that to heart and working hard to address the housing needs of its residents that we worked so hard to help them identify!
Evaluating and amending development codes is only one way in which local governments can help address resident housing problems in their communities. This is but one step of over eleven strategies that the Town of Estes Park is pursuing, as recommended by the Housing Needs Assessment conducted by WSW Consulting and Rees Consulting in 2016.
Jackson Hole News and Guide reports that severe housing conditions rank #2 among health issues in a survey conducted by St. John’s Medical Center and Teton County Public Health. More and more studies are coming out that draw the link between adverse health effects and stable, affordable housing, adding yet more concerns to the lack of affordable housing in many resort-impacted communities.
The results of the Gunnison Valley Housing Needs Assessment were presented to the Town of Crested Butte, Colorado, in November, by Rees Consulting and Williford, LLC. The study found that extremely low rental vacancy rates, rising rents, an increase in the number of second homes in the Gunnison Valley, a decrease in local home ownership, an aging population, and housing costs rising much faster than incomes all contribute to affordable housing needs for locals.
WSW Consulting and Rees Consulting presented findings from a housing needs assessment they completed of the Whitefish zip code area. High housing prices (among other issues) are making it hard for local workers to find affordable housing in the city and forcing some residents to find housing in other communities.
Housing issues impact communities, residents, workers and employers in many ways. To help address these impacts, it is important to inform the public about these often complicated issues. The local media can play a strong role in helping to provide this education. The 13-part “Housing Divided” series run by the Summit Daily, in Summit County, CO, in which WSW Consulting and Rees Consulting are frequently quoted, is a great example of this type of outreach.