Affordable Workforce Housing is an issue in many communities throughout Colorado and is especially critical in resort communities. The Town of Breckenridge is taking a proactive approach to meet the needs of local employees, and is addressing the issue through a variety of tools and strategies. Providing affordable housing options for the local employees is vital in sustaining our community. The goal of the Breckenridge Workforce Housing Program is to insure that affordable housing is integrated throughout the community to provide a variety of housing options for the local workforce.
In 1988 the first dedicated workforce units were established in Breckenridge as a result of the Town’s newly adopted development code. The code is a combination of traditional zoning and performance zoning and incentivizes development that benefits the community such as deed restricted workforce housing. The early deed restrictions associated with these units were not very sophisticated and generally only prohibited the use of the properties for short-term rentals. As time went on the deed restrictions became more sophisticated incorporated elements such as the requirement of full-time work in Summit County and Income testing which are mechanisms designed to preserve the affordability of the homes over the long term and assure that they are being utilized by our local workforce. Over time, the Town has assessed the housing needs of the local community. The following reports outline the past and present housing needs while identifying best practices and strategies for providing more affordable housing options for the local workforce.
- 2008 Affordable Housing Action Plan: This plan was endorsed by the Town Council in 2008 as an update to the 2000 Affordable Housing Strategy. The Plan establishes specific goals, actions, and targets. The primary goal of the plan is to insure that 900 additional workforce housing units (in addition to the 778 units already existing and/or authorized) are approved and/or constructed by the time the community reaches full build out. It is estimated that there will be over 10,000 jobs in the Town by build out and a target of 1678 housing units will insure that 47% of the employees working in Town could live in Town.
- 2000 Affordable Housing Strategy: This policy document describes the housing needs of the community which consist of both ‘catch up’ or ‘keep up’ needs. Catch up needs are generally current housing shortages and deficiencies such as overcrowding and unaffordability. Keep up needs are generally new housing needs associated with new development. The Strategy outlines specific tools to address the different types of workforce housing needs. This Strategy also established the Towns' Affordable Housing Annexation Policy, which has been particularly effective in creating neighborhoods such as Wellington Neighborhood, Vista Point, Gibson Heights, and Vic’s Landing.
- Summit Workforce Housing Needs Assessment 2013 and 2016 Workforce Demand Update: The goal of these studies is to identify the existing workforce housing needs and to forecast future needs, both for ‘homeownership’ and ‘rental’ units. The studies takes into account the changing demographics, aging population, retirees, local wages, jobs, and market conditions to project the future demand and supply. This updated information will help guide workforce housing policies and programs at County level as well as the municipal levels. An update was completed in 2016.
OTHER STUDIES & REPORTS: