Elected officers, city employees, enterprise house owners, lodging corporations and extra come collectively to determine options to Summit County’s workforce housing ‘disaster’

Enterprise house owners, elected officers, city employees and different stakeholders meet Wednesday, July 21, for a breakout dialogue throughout the Summit County Housing Motion Initiative on the Beaver Run Resort and Convention Middle in Breckenridge. The occasion was centered on figuring out actionable steps for a way numerous teams may work collectively to assist mitigate the inexpensive housing scarcity.
Photograph by Jenna deJong / jdejong@summitdaily.com

Espresso cups have been crammed, identify tags have been pinned and the room at Beaver Run Resort and Convention Middle was buzzing with chatter from leaders throughout Summit County on Wednesday morning. This week, Keystone Coverage Middle coordinated a half-day housing summit, gathering over 90 nonprofit leaders, enterprise house owners, elected officers and city employees to brainstorm and collaborate about potential methods that might be used to mitigate the county’s workforce housing scarcity.

Referred to as the Summit County Housing Motion Initiative, the occasion is one among many methods Summit County employees has introduced as a way to deal with the county’s advanced workforce housing points.

The day kicked off with a couple of phrases from Summit County Commissioners Elisabeth Lawrence, Josh Blanchard and Tamara Pogue. Throughout their speeches, all three careworn the urgency they felt to provide you with a mess of methods.



“It’s definitely in all probability our largest precedence proper now,” Lawrence mentioned. “I do know we mentioned we have been in a housing disaster 5 years in the past, however that was youngster’s play in comparison with now. We’re in a completely totally different place.”

Following the commissioners’ remarks was a panel presentation about present tasks within the pipeline. The dialogue then moved right into a brainstorming session led by Berrick Abramson, senior coverage director for the Keystone Coverage Middle.



Abramson declared that “no thought was off the desk” as attendees shouted out potential short- and long-term options, partnerships and processes that would goal totally different parts of the county’s inexpensive housing scarcity.

Certainly one of these concepts was to develop funding. In 2015, voters handed a poll measure referred to as 5A, which is a gross sales and use tax of 0.125% that helps fund housing tasks throughout the county. Although the cash is useful, one attendee identified that the tax alone isn’t sufficient to maintain up with demand.

“If we simply addressed what’s wanted in (Breckenridge) at this time — simply at this time — on the very low finish, it’s $100 million as much as half a billion with growth of housing, and 5A alone won’t generate these {dollars} that we have to do this,” Breckenridge City Supervisor Rick Holman mentioned. “We have to search for different funding alternatives.”

Throughout the brainstorming session, Frisco Mayor Hunter Mortensen mentioned he additionally needed attendees to rethink how they method the difficulty.

“I additionally wish to add, on the larger perspective, altering the best way we focus on (the subject) or give it some thought as inexpensive housing or workforce housing and take a look at it extra as essential infrastructure for our group as a result of that’s the place we’re seeing the issue,” Mortensen mentioned. “It’s time to shift how we identify it.”

Abramson wrote every thought down on giant poster sheets, after which attendees took three Publish-it notes and positioned them on the concepts they most supported.

The most well-liked concepts have been to :

  • Create a centralized clearing home for residents to get extra details about rental properties and probably get on a ready record
  • Proceed with the Lake Hill workforce growth venture
  • Convert some short-term rental items into long-term items
  • Renew the 5A funding measure within the subsequent few years and determine different potential funding sources
  • Help measures to permit for extra accent dwellings
  • Analysis the potential so as to add modular properties across the county

As soon as completed, Abramson broke attendees into three teams, and every group mentioned two concepts. The dialogue throughout the breakouts centered on what it will take to get these six potential options carried out in the neighborhood, together with figuring out main gamers that have to be concerned, the price of the technique, what a timeline would appear to be, potential boundaries and extra.

At the start of the occasion, Abramson mentioned the purpose was to have concrete, actionable subsequent steps outlined shifting ahead, however a few of the breakout teams famous that further analysis and brainstorming would wish to occur earlier than motion might be taken.

For instance, the group that mentioned changing short-term rental items into long-term leases mentioned there have been many stakeholders and conditions at play and that the subject would wish extra collaboration earlier than shifting ahead.

Different concepts, resembling figuring out a clearing home for locals, have been acted upon on the occasion. For instance, attendees famous that there wanted to be a useful resource or a one-stop store, for locals and staff to go to to get complete details about the county’s out there housing.

Attendees famous that residents and staff depend on myriad sources to seek out housing, together with the Fb group One Man’s Junk Summit County in addition to family and friends and word-of-mouth.

Attendees recognized that the Summit Mixed Housing Authority may fill this void, and new Govt Director Rob Murphy voiced his assist for the concept.

Subsequent steps have been additionally recognized for the Lake Hill workforce housing growth. Among the steps recognized included shifting ahead with zoning necessities, making use of for state and federal funding, and figuring out a possible developer to assist with the venture.

In all, greater than 30 methods have been prompt, six of which have been mentioned throughout the occasion. All of this analysis plus the discussions, shall be compiled right into a report created by the Keystone Coverage Middle, which shall be used to maintain momentum on the housing dialogue. Shifting ahead, elected officers anticipated to proceed collaborating with city employees, enterprise house owners, nonprofit leaders and different attendees.

“Let’s work collectively, let’s put egos apart, let’s deliver cash collectively — as a result of all of us have it in little bits in several methods — and we’re going to make one thing occur right here,” Lawrence mentioned.

Attendees submit sticky notes on the methods they most assist Wednesday, July 21, throughout the Summit County Housing Motion Initiative on the Beaver Run Resort and Convention Middle. The occasion was centered on figuring out actionable steps for a way numerous teams may work collectively to assist mitigate the inexpensive housing scarcity.
Photograph by Jenna deJong / jdejong@summitdaily.com

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