Affordable Housing in Summit County

May 14, 2009

Moderator: Howard Hallman, The Greenlands Reserve                  Attendees: 56

Attendees included: Tom Clark, Mayor of Kremmling; Eileen Davies, Frisco Town Council; David O’Neil, Wellington Developer; Steve Everist, Solarado Developer; Tim Reader, CO State Forest Service; Steve Hill, SC Assistant Manager; Matt Sugar, Senator Udall’s office; David Bourquin, Habitat for Humanity; Robert Swartz, SC Planning; Rob Williams, Meridian Institute; Upper Blue, Lower Blue, and 10-Mile Planning Commission members; Thomas Davidson, SC Commissioner; Ken Deshaies, SnowHomeProperties.

The roundtable discussion expanded the term ‘affordable housing’ to include workforce or attainable housing. The focus of the forum was: how to live, play, work, raise families, and age in Summit County.

County citizens stated the realities: expensive land, high cost to rent or purchase, rigid financing, large homes, large second-home market, top-end homes, and shortage of homes in the moderate range for working class people; in addition, the definitions of moderate, affordable, and attainable present their own problems in a tourist-based economy.

Forum Vision Statements: Workforce housing doesn’t have to be categorized and set aside as separate, but rather can be integrated into a neighborhood, without distinction as to an implied appearance, lower standard of upkeep, or stereotype. It was stated that neither should deed restrictions mean wealth restrictions; real estate appreciation is vital. Care should be taken to build up, not down. Belonging to a neighborhood is an essential factor in providing attainable housing. The goal should encompass more than simply providing cheap housing.

Creative design, wise site planning, smart financing, and eased regulations pave the way for attainable housing to incorporate into existing communities. It is important to reduce a homeowner’s monthly expenditures (example HOA fees).

It was asked if the Towns could help with move-up opportunities like in Chapel Hill, NC. How can we help renters rent now, in order to buy later? Future homebuyers need to accumulate down-payments. As well, Planning Boards could consider easing restrictions on accessory apartments (and parking).

Emphasizing site planning and a separate sense of space, attainable housing can offer appeal and neighborhood. To attract and keep all ages, community planning needs to be mature in design and scope. An invitational positioning invites a whole, healthy, vibrant, and sustainable community. 

Our Future Summit is a program of The Greenlands Reserve, Howard Hallman, President


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Working to make Summit County a Better Place to Live for Ourselves and Future Generations


 Howard Hallman

PO Box 209, Frisco, CO 80443

970-468-9134 or hhallman@ourfuturesummit.org