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More affordable housing could be coming to Park City

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Posted at 8:19 PM, Feb 14, 2021

PARK CITY, Utah — A potential new housing development could bring close to 150 new affordable housing units to the Park City area.

The proposed housing unit, called Highland Flats, includes a mixture of apartments and townhomes at the junction of Interstate 80 and U.S. Highway 40. About one-third of the 410-unit development would be reserved for people who work in Park City but make significantly less than the average median income (AMI).

“I know we are going to get backlash from this, I know we are going to get part of the community who doesn’t like this. The fact is that’s not going to change," said Adam Breen with Breen Homes. "The influx of traffic, the people who want to come here to visit, the people who want to live in Park City, that’s not going to change. So, whether I develop it or someone else comes in and does something different, they are still going to fight these same problems of traffic, utilities, pushing out the wildlife, people coming in."

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The development is a partnership between Colmena Group, Breen Homes and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties, according to a news release.

The proposed development would help provide housing for people in the 30-50% AMI range, which includes people such as school employees, essential workers, teachers, service industry workers and more. This is something that Park City truly needs, Breen said.

“So if you let go of those workforce and those service individuals, you start to lose what you have in that community, and then it becomes that multi-millionaire community that doesn’t have that infrastructure,” he said.

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There is a Facebook group against the proposed development with about 100 followers called “No to Highland Flats PC." Breen said he is sensitive to people’s concerns and hopes people will reach out with any questions or concerns. He added the group has talked with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources about the wildlife impacts, done traffic studies, talked with the public schools and several utility companies to discuss the impacts from the potential development.

“As a result of meeting extensively with various community leaders, business owners, nonprofits and the Park City School District to gather their input, our conclusion is that the most compelling, countervailing public interest is the need for affordable rental housing," said Jake Breen with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties. "We hope our parcel can help fulfill that need, and allow those who serve our community to truly be a part of it with the common goal of achieving greater socioeconomic diversity.”

Adding more affordable housing to Park City has been a major topic of discussion with the city council. During Thursday’s meeting, the council discussed how they can address the issue.

“It’s crazy, we still can’t find a workforce and the one thing we are hearing over and over is that people don’t want to commute in and out of Park City,” Councilwoman Becca Gerber said.

The council discussed their three-prong approach to affordable housing: Policy, Development and Partnership. You can view the full meeting here:

“The hardest thing we have to solve with affordable housing is land,” Councilman Steve Joyce said.

There is a public hearing scheduled for Feb. 23 at 6 p.m. to discuss the general plan’s amendments and rezoning. For more information on how to share your opinion or listen in, click here.

For more information on the proposed development, click here.