Former K-Mart Site
Denver City Council Member Kendra Black reports Forum Real Estate is redeveloping the vacant K-Mart site on Monaco & Evans into a new residential community that will include a pocket park. Demolition was anticipated for June. Construction is estimated to start this fall. Forum reports we are planning a new residential community that will include three acres of new public amenities, including programmed open space, new streets, sidewalks and tree lawns. The site will be developed in two phases, with Phase I consisting of 287 market-rate apartments spread across six three-story buildings which will appear similar to townhomes and feature ground floor garages.
East Colfax Corridor Bus Rapid Transit
Denver City Council Member Amanda Sawyer reports the East Colfax Corridor Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project is currently in the preliminary engineering and design phase. Key tasks include a National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process, traffic analysis, parking and pedestrian access analysis, an engineering survey to form the basis of project design, and community outreach to inform the BRT service characteristics and station design. Center-running BRT on East Colfax Avenue will provide one dedicated transit lane in each direction from Broadway to Yosemite. The Project Team, led by Denver and the Parsons Transportation Group, has established a Technical Working Group including the City & County of Denver, RTD, CDOT, DRCOG, FTA, and City of Aurora to guide the NEPA process, project design and identification of funding. Plans are underway to reconvene the Community Task Force, representing business, neighborhood and community groups from both Denver and Aurora, and to update and re-engage the broader public.
Johnson & Wales Campus Purchase
Urban Land Conservancy (ULC), Denver Public Schools (DPS), and Denver Housing Authority (DHA) announce they have purchased the former Johnson & Wales University Denver campus. Last summer, the university announced it would cease operations in Denver after the 2020-21 school year and sought to sell the entire 25-acre campus. Denver Housing Authority (DHA) purchased the south portion of the campus, which includes Triangolo Hall and Gaebe Hall, two former dormitory buildings, with the goal of expanding affordable housing opportunities in the community. St. Elizabeth’s School, moving into Centennial Hall, has been serving Northeast Denver for 15 years as an intentionally inclusive school with a dedication to equity, belonging, and educational opportunity for all students. The Kitchen Network, Denver’s longest-running shared kitchen, which incubates specialty food businesses, will expand to the Culinary Arts Building and Vail Hall on the campus allowing the organization to double its impact and number of small businesses served. Archway Communities will purchase all four residential buildings on the east campus: Johnson Hall, Wales Hall, President’s Hall, and Founder’s Hall.
Shipping containers see new life as affordable Box 500 apartments in Salt Lake City
Using shipping containers as the framework reduced costs, Newman said, and shows that the steel boxes can be used to provide more affordable housing as the Salt Lake Valley’s population and housing prices boom. The industrial exterior maintains the look of the shipping containers, making it stand out from some of the other construction in the area. “We could have made it look like anything on the exterior, but we left it,” said Newman, who owns the development firm Eco Box Fabricators, as well as Metro National Title. “I think it looks pretty neat.”
Colorado cities will be able to require developers to build affordable housing in new rental projects
House Bill 1117 modifies state land use statutes so local governments can require below-market-rate units in new or redeveloped rental projects without running afoul of the state’s rent-control prohibition. It reverses the effects of a 2000 Colorado Supreme Court ruling that restrained local governments for years. The law comes as Colorado communities, from Front Range urban cities to mountain towns, are facing an unprecedented housing crisis. Colorado has added nearly 1.5 million people in the past two decades, and, as more demand drives up housing prices and new construction lags, it’s largely low- and moderate-income workers who are priced out of housing.
California eyes shuttered malls, stores for new housing
If successful, it’s believed California would be the first state to allow multi-family housing on commercial sites statewide, said Eric Phillips, vice president of policy and legislation for the California chapter of the American Planning Association. Developers who use the law still would have to obey locally approved design standards. But Phillips said the law would limit local governments’ ability to reject the projects. That’s why some local leaders oppose the bill, arguing it undermines their authority.
Is there a housing bubble?
For homebuilders, knowing if demand is going to crater is important, because they don’t want to make major capital investments in submarkets where demand might change in the next year when projects may finish up. But this is also a function of America’s terrible local housing policies. There are not nearly enough places to live near the nation’s most productive job centers; the reason builders are forced to build less in certain communities is because local regulations make it impossible to build where people want to live.
Tempe injects 3D printing into the affordable housing mix
“We knew going in that this initial 3D-printed home would be more expensive than our traditional builds. It is very much like a working prototype,” he commented. “But we are confident this technology holds the promise for reducing costs, the time to build and the waste associated with a traditional stick-built home.” Barlow believes the initiative can help “change the conversation” about what’s possible in the affordable housing space and spur discussions to further refine the process.
Amazon Commits $300 Million To Develop Affordable Housing In Three Cities
This new commitment is part of the Seattle-based tech giant’s Housing Equity Fund, a more than $2 billion commitment to preserve and create over 20,000 affordable housing units in the cities it calls home. In Arlington, Amazon is teaming up with Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, which operates the Washington region’s rail, bus and paratransit service, to create 1,000 new affordable housing units on property owned by Metro at their stations throughout the region.
Wall Street isn’t to blame for the chaotic housing market
It’s important to understand that institutional investors play a small role in the American housing market. While there are big firms for apartments and other multi-family housing units, there traditionally hasn’t been the same level of investment in single-family homes. Yield-chasing investors have turned to the real estate market because it has become a very profitable place to put your money. And the main reason it has become so profitable is the preexisting housing shortage created by local governments and certain homeowners seeking to block new homes from being built, leading to a nearly 4 million home shortage nationwide.
Housing in Brief: Berlin Will Vote on Expropriating Apartments in September
In a movement spearheaded by the city’s rent freeze during the pandemic, organizers are pushing for greater change as Berlin’s rent continues to surge. Insider reports that rent has doubled in the last decade, and with more than 80% of Berlin’s residents renting their homes, this movement has been popular among the public.
Ending deposits would open doors for low-income renters in North Carolina
The traditional cash security deposit required to rent an apartment effectively doubles the upfront cost of renting, which makes too many apartments inaccessible for families without significant savings to cover the cost. As it stands, four in 10 Americans don’t have the money available to deal with an emergency expense of $400, much less the rising costs of a typical security deposit.
America’s Failure To Build Is Driving Home Prices Ever Higher
What happened to supply and demand? JCHS notes several reasons for underproduction, but the primary blame goes to restrictive local policies such as single-family zoning, minimum lot sizes, parking requirements, etc. A 2018 survey of over 2700 communities found “93 percent imposed minimum lot sizes” with 67 percent requiring lots of at least one acre in size and sometimes more, many in suburban towns.
The Benefits of Converting Class C Office Into First Class Residential
So what buildings are the best candidates for office-to-residential conversion? Perhaps counterintuitively, we found that the “worse” the office building (typically Class C buildings), the better candidate they are for conversion to residential. Class C buildings typically have 11 foot floor-to-floor heights — 8 foot or 7 foot 6 inches clear once you factor in all the ducts and cabling that runs through. In office buildings, that’s now considered almost oppressively low, making for a gloomy, cramped feeling. By stripping out the ducts and ceiling tiles, we can create ceilings for residential that are 10 foot high, which is more generous than many new-build residential towers, allowing for lots of light and spacious-feeling apartments.