AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROJECTS

Implementing an Affordable Housing Plan, Dorset, Vermont

DorsetCraneandtheGov.PORTOne year after the initial affordable housing plan, the Town hired Crane Associates to implement several of the recommendations in the Plan. This phase of the town’s affordable housing initiative completed a market study on affordable rental and homeownership units, acquired options to purchase property, drew initial architectural designs, completed pre-construction site engineering and developed cost estimates. A developer was hired and 24 units were built. The entire project went from planning to construction in 24 months. A ribbon cutting ceremony with the Governor (shown here) occurred in August 2006 and the units are now fully occupied.

Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing, South Portland, Maine
Portland is an “entitlement jurisdiction” and eligible to apply for and receive U.S. Housing and Urban Development funding. As such they are required to conduct an analysis that documents their efforts to further fair housing within their borders, to prepare a plan to correct any problems found, and to conduct annual reviews of their progress. Our analysis included extensive interviews with all housing stakeholders, review of confidential data obtained through the Freedom of Information Act Requests (FOIAR), and review of housing discrimination testing. The analysis reviewed the public, private and public/private sectors and their compliance with relevant policies, laws, regulations, building codes, and administrative actions. Client: City of South Portland, Maine

Regional Affordable Housing Plan, Ulster County, New York
Ulster County has become the next affordable suburb to New York City. Commuters who find Duchess and Westchester Counties too expensive are now looking to Ulster as the affordable solution. The changing market demand has made housing prices in Ulster County double or even triple in some municipalities in the past 6 years. This project includes extensive documentation of affordable housing issues, policies and local impediments to supplying affordable housing. The project included: primary data gathering and personal interviews with affordable housing advocates; forecasts of housing demand and supply for the next ten years; an inventory of housing stock categorized into a wide range of household needs and income levels; an assessment of local housing policies, initiatives, and organizations; and a growth constraints analysis that included both policy and natural resource constraints. The project culminated in an comprehensive and detailed report that documented the causes of the problems and described solutions tailored to work specifically in Ulster County. Client: Ulster County Planning Department. Partner: Economic and Policy Resources.

Affordable Housing Market Analysis, Rutland City, Vermont
This project was a market feasibility analysis of 90 units an affordable housing in downtown Rutland City, Vermont. The project involved both subsidized and market rate rental units as well as subsidized and home ownership units. The project defined the market area for affordable housing; determined affordable rents in the market area; documented supply of and demand for affordable housing in the market area. The analysis gave an affordable housing developer and financial analyst the data needed to gain funding to complete the project. Client: Durvernay and Brooks, New York City.

Affordable Housing Market Analysis, Richford Vermont
This project was a market feasibility analysis of 12 units of affordable apartments in downtown Richford, Vermont. The project defined the market area for affordable housing; determined affordable rents in the market area; documented supply of and demand for affordable housing in the market area. The analysis gave an affordable housing developer critical information on the financial feasibility of a new affordable housing project in the market area. Client: Housing Vermont.

Affordable Housing Market Analysis, Bennington, Vermont
This project was a market feasibility analysis of a scattered site in-fill project involving 13 units of new construction and rehabilitated apartments in downtown Bennington, Vermont. The project defined the market area for affordable housing; determined affordable rents in the market area; documented supply of and demand for affordable housing in the market area. The analysis gave an affordable housing developer the data needed to gain funding to complete the project. The project is now under construction. Client: Regional Affordable Housing Corporation.

Affordable Housing Market Analysis, Springfield, Vermont
This project analyzed the redevelopment potential of 69 rental units in Springfield Vermont. Project included defining the market area for affordable housing and an analysis on the supply of, demand for, subsidized housing in the market area. Locally specific affordability calculations and the project’s financial feasibility were analyzed. Client: Housing Vermont.

Defining ‘Affordable Housing’ in Williston, Vermont
maple_treeAs part of their affordable housing planning process, the Town of Williston needed definitive data and analysis that clearly documented affordable housing for their community. Our work researched and analyzed the annual and monthly wages for 379 occupations. We analyzed housing sales, Fair Market Rents, and the elements of affordability including: local utility costs, insurance rates, mortgage rates, and property taxes. Finally we determined the “affordability gap” between affordable housing costs and the ability to pay for a wide range of job types. Client: Town of Williston

Housing the Workforce: An Assessment of Housing in the All-America Valley
The Lower Naugatuck Valley of Connecticut is in the mist of a significant economic and demographic shift. Housing prices are outpacing job income by 300%, the region’s labor force is commuting farther than ever, manufacturing jobs are being replaced with a diversity of jobs, and younger workers are leaving the region. This report analyzes the details of these changes, projects housing supply and demand for the next 20 years, determines local affordability rates, and details specific recommendations for new affordable housing construction.

Exploring Options for Affordable Housing in Dorset, Vermont
Dorset Vermont is an affluent community with some of the most expensive land in the state. Nonetheless, many Dorset residents live below the poverty level or have difficulty meeting their housing payments. High priced land, the lack of public sewer and water, and numerous environmental constraints create extraordinarily difficult challenges to building affordable housing in Dorset. This Affordable Housing Plan lays the groundwork for what needs to be done. The Plan documents the local demand for affordable housing, defines “affordable” for households of different income levels, and investigates current and potential supply. It concludes with five local case studies to demonstrate how affordable housing is built and what it can look like when completed.

A Comprehensive Assessment of Housing in Windham, Maine
Windham Maine, a suburb of Portland, is one of the fastest growing towns in its region, growing twice as fast as the county average. A housing price bubble has affected the region by severely limiting the supply of affordable housing. This report examines the supply and demand for affordable housing, determines the current gap between supply and demand, calculates affordable rates for new home-buyers of different income levels, and projects the need for affordable housing into the next ten years. The study concludes with specific strategies on how the town can meet its future affordable housing demand.