700 housing plan on agenda | SteamboatToday.com

700 housing plan on agenda

Attainability program would market 480 homes to set income levels

Editor’s Note: This story has been changed from its original version, to reflect new numbers from the Yampa Valley Housing Authority regarding household income and maximum home prices at 200 percent area median income, or AMI. The initial numbers provided included a calculation error at that income level.

The attainability program for the proposed Steamboat 700 annexation would require 480 homes to be initially marketed to buyers earning no more than 200 percent of the area median income.

The attainability program must have Steamboat Springs City Council approval before any development occurs at Steamboat 700 and is in addition to other affordable housing measures in Steamboat 700's annexation agreement. A discussion of the attainability program is on the City Council's agenda for Tuesday night.

Steamboat 700 proposes about 2,000 homes and 380,000 square feet of commercial space on a 487-acre site just west of city limits. City planning documents cite a 20- to 30-year timeframe for development. City residents will decide the fate of the annexation in a mail-only vote that concludes March 9. Ballots will be sent to registered voters from Feb. 15 to 19.

Whether the city's annexation agreement with Steamboat 700 developers does enough to provide affordable housing is a topic of local debate.

The agreement's community housing plan stipulates that Steamboat 700 will give the city 15 acres, on which the city would be responsible for the development of affordable units. The West Steamboat Springs Area Plan requires that 20 percent of the total number of units built in the annexed area be deed-restricted affordable housing, with buyers averaging 80 percent of the area median income, or AMI. If 2,000 homes are built in Steamboat 700, 400 would need to be affordable units.

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Steamboat 700 also would place a real estate transfer fee, of 1.2 percent of the total sale price, on all sales at the development. Of that 1.2 percent, 0.5 percent would go toward a city affordable housing fund. Another 0.5 percent would go to the Steamboat Springs School District, and the remaining 0.2 percent would go to the city's capital fund.

"When they dedicate that land, and with the real estate transfer fee, that covers their (affordable housing) requirement," city planner Jason Peasley said last week.

The attainability program is in addition to that requirement. It stipulates that 30 percent of the remaining 1,600 homes at Steamboat 700, or 480 homes, would be marketed to buyers or households earning between 120 and 200 percent of AMI. Danny Mulcahy, principal and project manager for Steamboat 700, said last week that the marketing requirement applies for each home's first 12 months on the market.

He said when combined with the affordable housing requirements, the attainability program results in 44 percent of the total homes at Steamboat 700, or 880 homes, having either a deed restriction or income-related marketing requirement.

"I can't sell a piece of dirt until that (attainability program) is approved," Mulcahy said.

Tom Leeson, director of the city's Planning and Community Development Department, said City Council will review "a skeleton" of the attainability program Tuesday. Mulcahy expressed confidence that the current numbers won't change, but he said how the program is implemented and monitored remains to be decided.

According to documents provided by Mary Alice Page-Allen, asset/program manager for the Yampa Valley Housing Authority, 120 percent of AMI for a household of four people is $96,720. Assuming a down payment of no more than 20 percent and total, annual housing costs of no more than 30 percent of annual income — numbers stipulated in the annexation agreement — the maximum home price for that family is $408,828, with 80 percent financing. For that same household, 200 percent AMI is $161,200 in annual income. The maximum home price is $681,380 with 80 percent financing.

For a household of two people, 120 percent of AMI is $77,400 and the maximum home price is $327,164 with 80 percent financing. Also for a two-person household, $129,000 is 200 percent AMI and the maximum home price is $545,273 with 80 percent financing.

Exactly whom is targeted by local affordable housing programs also will be discussed at Tuesday's City Council meeting, which includes a presentation from a citizens committee that has studied the city's affordable housing policies.

The meeting also includes review of a development plan for Ski Time Square.

If you go

What: Steamboat Springs City Council meeting

When: 5 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Centennial Hall on 10th Street

Vote on 700

■ Ballots for the mail-only election will be sent to registered Steamboat Springs voters between Feb. 15 and 19. The election ends March 9.

■ Steamboat 700 is a proposed master-planned community on 487 acres adjacent to the western city limits of Steamboat Springs. The project proposes about 2,000 homes — from apartments to single-family home lots — and 380,000 square feet of commercial development that would be built to the standards of new urbanism (dense, walkable and transit-friendly).

Online

Learn more about the proposed Steamboat 700 annexation at http://www.steamboatpilot.com/news/steamboat700

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