The availability of affordable housing offers many community benefits, including reduced commute time and stress, and improved neighborhood stability. Unfortunately, many Colorado residents spend more than 30% of their income on housing, and finding attainable housing has become a serious challenge. The City of Arvada is certainly impacted by this problem. Citizen ratings of housing affordability as being "good" or better fell from 45% in the 2013 Citizen Survey to 26% in the 2015 Citizen Survey.
What is Arvada Doing?
The City is addressing these concerns in many ways. The City Council Strategic Plan includes the following strategic results related to housing:
- By 2019, 25% of new housing will be located in neighborhoods or developments that incorporate a mix of lot sizes, development densities and housing types and styles.
- By 2019, facilitate the development of one attainable senior housing development containing at least 50 units.
- By December 2017, develop a map of potential sites appropriate/suitable for attainable housing developments to be used for City Council discussion and neighborhood outreach in association with the Hometown Colorado Initiative.
Following the adoption of the City Council Strategic Plan, the City tasked Leadership Team members to help find ways to bridge the housing gap for households with low and moderate incomes. The results stemming from that directive were presented to Council in August 2016:
- Attainable Housing Developments in the Denver Metro Area (City Council Workshop, August 22, 2016)
Existing City Housing Programs
- Community Development Block Grant Funding
- Section 8 Housing
- Human Services Grant Funding
- Essential Home Repairs
- Accessory Dwelling Units
- Homebuyer Assistance Program
- Safe and Accessible Arvada
- Homelessness Task Force
City Housing Initiatives
The Bloomberg Application
The City recently completed a grant application for Bloomberg Philanthropies' 2017 Mayors Challenge, a highly competitive program that funds bold initiatives of local governments throughout the United States. Arvada's proposal is to "create a communal, resource sharing program that pairs aging Arvada homeowners with young adults from the community for mutual support. these pairings, facilitated by a professional team of program liaisons, will include cohousing arrangements, opportunities for meal sharing and social interaction, and corss-generational skills development. The key to our solution lies in pairing great potential with great experience and our model leverages interpersonal relationships as the 'glue' that allows all of Arvada's citizens to grow and thrive in the place they call 'home.'"
Bloomberg Philanthropies will announce the winners of the competition in October of 2018.
City Partnerships with Other Agencies
The City, in partnership with other agencies, is studying a number of long term solutions. The following documents provide some context and background on the affordable/attainable housing issues facing Arvada and the State of Colorado.
Jefferson County Affordable Housing Study
- Jefferson County Affordable Housing Study: Developer Barriers & Incentives (Presented to City Council on September 26, 2016)
Senior and Workforce Housing in Arvada
Senior and Workforce Housing in Arvada (December 2016)
Sample Ideas Being Explored Throughout the Country
- Housing Alternatives Part 2: Market Solutions - Pull-apart Townhomes, Live-work, Micro-Apartments, and Co-Housing
Arvada Housing Authority
- Main Telephone Number: 720-898-7494