Park City leaders on Thursday evening approved a sale of two rundown Old Town houses and the accompanying land to a group that plans to build a housing project based on the common values of the people who will be buying the places.

A firm called GreenPark Cohousing, LLC agreed to pay $400,000 for the property. The Park City Council approved the deal on a 5-0 vote. Mayor Dana Williams said officials are excited with the prospects of the project, which will be the first so-called cohousing development in Park City. City Hall paid $750,000 for the houses in 2009.

Nobody testified during a hearing prior to the City Council vote. Some of the people involved in GreenPark Cohousing, LLC were in the audience.

The firm will put down $20,000 in earnest money and pay another $175 per month until the deal is finalized. There is a May 15, 2013 deadline for GreenPark Cohousing, LLC to conduct detailed research into the property. The purchase is expected to be completed by June 15, 2013.

City Hall would receive 80 percent of the net profit of the sales of the units in the project. Officials do not expect there to be a profit given the sort of development GreenPark Cohousing, LLC proposes, however.

The firm wants to build a 10-unit project designed like a small condominium complex, a combination of one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom units. It will be built on the 1400 block of Park Avenue. The two houses there now are at 1450 Park Ave. and 1460 Park Ave.

It will be built in a U-shaped design with the front doors opening up to a green space. The construction will be done in an environmentally friendly manner and the buildings will be energy efficient.

The two rundown houses on the property now will be restored and made into residences.

Darrell Finlayson, the president of GreenPark Cohousing, LLC, said it was not clear yet when the firm will file an application with the Planning Department seeking the development approval it will need. He said, though, the group wants to break ground in early June. Construction is anticipated to last one year, he said.

The people involved with GreenPark Cohousing, LLC raised the $20,000 in earnest money and will secure a loan for the purchase and construction. The loan will be paid back with funds raised in the sale of the units.

"We all found some common interests and discovered we have common values," Finlayson said about the group.

He said the group is considering selling six of the units to people who qualify to purchase restricted work force housing. The other four will be sold to people who qualify at a higher price. The four will not be sold at market rate, however. There will be restrictions on the deeds limiting the value of appreciation to 3 percent per year, similar to limits placed on work force housing approved by City Hall.

Seven households are committed to purchasing units. Three more will be recruited, Finlayson said. Prices have not been set.

The City Council last spring chose GreenPark Cohousing, LLC over two other firms that were interested in purchasing the property. The two others could have been more lucrative for City Hall, but neither of them guaranteed all the money immediately.