Re-1 plans affordable housing for teachers | PostIndependent.com
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Re-1 plans affordable housing for teachers

Donna Gray

The Roaring Fork School District’s plan for affordable housing on a bench of land southwest of Basalt High School is beginning to take shape.Basalt planner Doug Pratte of the Land Studio is creating a conceptual site plan and working with the town with a goal of submitting a formal subdivision application early next year.The plan tentatively calls for 27 townhomes, duplexes and single-family homes on five acres. The district has not determined if the units will be rentals, teacher-owned or a mixture of the two, said school board member Brad Zeigel.The subdivision will be at least 500 feet from the school. “That seems to be the magic number,” Zeigel said, in land use regulations.There is also the double-edged sword of planning a housing project in Pitkin County. “It’s classified as a hard-to-develop area,” Zeigel said. But the county also has a higher income qualification for affordable housing than neighboring Garfield County.”If it was in Garfield County the first-time teachers wouldn’t qualify,” he added, because their incomes would exceed income guidelines.The project may also be open to others besides teachers.”We feel we need to leave it open,” Zeigel said, “in order to make it viable.” So firefighters, police and town employees could also be eligible to apply for the housing. “The teachers would be first in line,” Zeigel added.Re-1 has had such a project in mind since 2002 when the school board met with the town of Basalt to discuss construction of affordable housing on Basalt High School property, Zeigel said.”The hope is we get through approvals over the winter and are able to issue an RFP (request for proposal) for development teams in the spring/summer of 2005,” he said. “We will know more about the schedule as our meetings proceed with the town of Basalt.”Contact Donna Gray: 945-8515, ext. 510dgray@postindependent.com


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