Colorado Department of Local Affairs Celebrates Building Affordable Housing Communities

By Chynna Cowart

The Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA), through the Division of Housing (DOH), has contracted with several community partners to provide more affordable housing options for Coloradans across the state.

As average rental rates increase and the number of low-cost rental units available decreases, the scale of the housing crisis for low-income households continues to grow. We know that access to decent and affordable housing provides stability for vulnerable families and helps prevent homelessness.

With a combination of federal COVID19 stimulus funds and state funds, Colorado is poised to make an unprecedented investment in the affordability of its future housing. Public investment can have a profound impact on the housing situation of those most in need by financing the gap between the cost of buying and building a home and what the end user (buyer or tenant) can afford to pay in the form of a mortgage or rent, but public funding alone cannot solve the housing affordability challenge. We will continue to align with other affordable housing advocates to create these housing opportunities for Coloradans.

Developing communities

1. Archway Communities was founded with the belief that affordable housing is a critical component to building healthy communities. Like DOLA, they believe in finding opportunities to purchase vacant land for new construction or renovate outdated multi-family developments.

On North Wadsworth in Lakewood, Colorado, Archway Communities, in partnership with DOLA and other community actors, purchased land and received tax credits to build profitable homes.

Designed for low-to-moderate income seniors aged 62 and over, Robinson Place will have 67 units and a variety of amenities, including a large community hall with an entertainment kitchen, two rooftop terraces, a central laundry room and a storage room. on bicycles. With a focus on health and fitness, community development, fine arts and culture, etc., Archway will provide a full range of on-site services.

In addition to high frequency bus service with quick access to light rail, the location is walkable and features a neighborhood shopping center, convenience store, park, grocery store , a Walmart and a pharmacy.

The Homeless Research Institute predicts that the number of homeless people over the age of 62 will increase by 33% between 2010 and 2020 (from 44,172 to 58,772 people) and will more than double between 2010 and 2050. It is imperative that we make affordable housing easily accessible to eligible older populations because housing is one of the largest expenses in the typical budget of a 65+ household.

2. The Telluride Foundation, another community partner, is committed to enriching the quality of life for residents, visitors and the workforce of the Telluride area. The Foundation does this by developing and supporting initiatives that make direct investments and create meaningful change. Recently they opened their newest community investment – Pinion Park Norwood.

“There’s been a lot of hysteria around regional affordable housing, but there are actually solutions, and we can move forward,” Telluride Foundation President and CEO Paul Major previously said. DailyPlanet.

Over the past decade, housing needs in rural communities have only increased. The lack of large-scale development in rural areas means that construction costs are often higher in rural areas than in urban areas, reducing incentives for private investment. In many rural areas, credit is also difficult to obtain, making it difficult to maintain existing units.

To combat this, the Telluride Foundation is restructuring rural housing by integrating donated land, modular home design and manufacturing, and low-cost construction financing into a toolkit that makes it cheaper to build rural housing for essential labor in rural areas.

3. Crosswinds at Arista, by Gorman & Company, will bring 159 affordable apartments to Broomfield. One- to three-bedroom apartments will be offered as part of the three-story complex at rents ranging from $500 to $2,000, with an average rent of $1,200 per month. According to city and county planning documents, rents will range between 30 and 80 percent of the area’s median income. Facilities will include picnic and play areas, dog parks, community gardens and outdoor gathering areas.

The 6.2-acre site received unanimous approval from Broomfield City Council last November after council identified the need for more affordable housing in Broomfield.

“We are extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to create Crosswinds in Arista in partnership with the City and County of Broomfield, the Broomfield Housing Authority, and the State of Colorado Division of Housing. This new community meets the goals set out by the Broomfield Housing Advisory Committee and will expand the range of housing options available in the Arista neighborhood,” said Kimball Crangle, president of Colorado Market at Gorman & Company, in a statement. communicated. “This project could not have come to fruition without alignment with the seller of the property, the Colorado State Land Board. Our shared goals helped put this project on the map.

As DOLA continues to collaborate with a multitude of partners across the state, we remain focused on providing safe, secure, and affordable housing to the Coloradans we serve.

Chynna Cowart is a press secretary for the Colorado Department of Local Affairs.

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