“The Gunnison Valley Regional Housing Authority’s MISSION is to advocate, promote, plan and provide the long-term supply of desirable and affordable housing in Gunnison County in order to maintain a well-rounded community.”
“Our vision is to support the quality of life and economic vitality of the unique communities in the Gunnison Valley by increasing housing choices and opportunities for local residents.”
Each community in the valley has unique characteristics, and will bring different assets and priorities to their affordable housing work. At the same time, our local economy and housing challenges are regional in nature, and sometimes require regional and collaborative responses.
A holistic approach to affordability is needed – we acknowledge that physical deed restricted homes are the most tangible element of housing affordability, but energy efficiency, transportation, healthcare, childcare, and local wages are all ingredients in a sustainable local cost of living. Programs such as down payment assistance, homebuyer education, and home renovation also help to ensure successful outcomes. A holistic approach to housing also recognizes the importance of housing choices in close proximity to jobs, schools, and other services.
The strength of our local economy is closely linked with the strength of our housing market; the housing authority’s role is to create more housing choices for local employees and residents, not to compete with private sector endeavors or undertake work that might oversupply housing for a specific demographic.
A successful workforce housing inventory requires long term commitment and consistent administration through periods of economic downturn as well as economic growth. The Gunnison valley is anticipated to remain a highly desirable place to live even as housing costs outpace local wages.
Our housing solutions need to be nimble and responsive to changing market conditions, such as the recent rapid growth in short term rentals and the Vail purchase of Crested Butte Mountain Resort.
The Housing Authority was created to meet a need not met by the private market; the housing authority’s efforts in partnership with local governments, non-profits, and the private sector can help to address these unmet needs. Partnerships that build upon the strengths and assets of the respective partners are essential for bridging the gap between what the market will provide and what local residents need for housing.
- Housing Authority and local government roles include land use entitlements and requirements, fees, collecting revenues dedicated to housing, public works and infrastructure, appropriate subsidies, and transparency and long-term accountability to the tax-payers;
- Private sector roles include local participation in creating economic vitality, access to capital, skilled labor and expertise such as architecture, engineering, development, finance, and vertical construction.
The gap between local wages and housing costs is significant, and building new housing is expensive, complex, and has risk. Public resources must be used judiciously, and partnerships leveraged so that workforce housing is not over or under subsidized.
Sunshine on the process – when investing public resources in housing solutions, we will do so with public input, transparency, and accountability.