An affordable housing proposal will be brought before the Summit County Planning Commission later this month. The developers are hoping to construct over 400 units at the I-80 and US 40 interchange.
The Highland Flats project, if developed, would construct 410 rental units on a 40-acre parcel just south of the Interstate 80-US 40 interchange.
Adam Breen is one of the developers of the project and says the units will be heavily focused on addressing affordable workforce housing needs in Summit County.
According to data by the US Census Bureau, the area median income, or AMI, in the area for a single person is just under $80,000. Breen says 144 of the units would be priced between 30 and 80% AMI.
“When we propose something that is at a 30% AMI, we’re catering to a person that is making $23,919 a year, an affordable unit to him,” says Breen. “What that actually means, a one bedroom, one bathroom unit at 30% AMI would be rented at $598 dollars a month. That’s really affordable when you talk about the ability to live in workforce housing in Park City.”
Additionally, about 180 units would be priced at 100 to 120% AMI and the rest would be market value. All units would be rentals.
With Park City working through an expensive affordable housing project of their own with the arts and culture district and the need for workforce housing increasing, Breen and his partners are optimistic their project will be approved. However, he does recognize that there is likely to be pushback from members of the public not willing to see a high-density housing project in their backyard.
“We understand that this is an uphill battle,” Breen says. “We also recognize that when people see density, their first reaction is ‘no, not in my backyard. I don’t want to see this.’ It’s an area that we all see that needs to be fixed, yet people aren’t willing to see it in their backyard. We truly believe that this spot, being right against I-80 and against [Highway] 40, is a good spot to allow density.”
A contact for the nearby Highland Estates Homeowners Association did not immediately return KPCW’s request for comment.
The current plans would build just under 10 units per acre and Breen hopes to rezone the land in order to accomplish the project.
A traffic study conducted by the group concluded traffic would likely double along Highland Drive if the units were built, but also says no changes to the road are needed in order to accommodate for the increase.
According to Breen, the project will not seek any affordable housing tax credits in order to help pay for the project either in an effort to not financially burden the county.
He says he and his staff welcome public input as the proposal takes shape.
“We look forward to that public comment,” he says. “We recognize that there will be a lot of mixed feeling with that and most likely some backlash as we’ve already started to see on some of that. I’m also more than happy to take questions and comments directly to me and my staff of what this means.”
The Highland Flats development will be presented to the Summit County Planning Commission on February 23rd. The meeting will be open to the public and comments will be accepted.
More information on the Highland Flats project can be found here.