Workers will have new digs in Old Town | ParkRecord.com

Workers will have new digs in Old Town

by Jay Hamburger OF THE RECORD STAFF

Two families by early in 2011 could have Old Town addresses, courtesy of a not-for-profit housing group.

Habitat for Humanity of Summit and Wasatch Counties is preparing to break ground on a small development in the upper reaches of the neighborhood, with the goal of turning over the keys to two new houses as early as Jan. 1, 2011.

Habitat for Humanity is scheduled to hold a groundbreaking ceremony on Monday at 5 p.m. at the site of the development. The two addresses are next door to each other at 154 Marsac Ave. and 156 Marsac Ave., south of the Marsac Building and at the corner of Marsac Avenue and Ontario Avenue.

City Hall currently owns the land, but officials previously agreed to transfer the ground to Habitat for Humanity for the work force development. Kathy Lofft, the executive director of the local Habitat for Humanity chapter, said there will be restrictions on the deeds to the house that will ensure they remain within the work force housing pool.

"There is absolutely an affordable housing need in this area," Lofft said, adding that the transfer of the land from City Hall her group is "imminent."

The land is vacant following the earlier teardown of a house that had stood at the site. The new houses will each have approximately 1,200 square feet of living area.

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Lofft said two families — one from Park City and the other from the Snyderville Basin — had qualified to purchase the homes several years ago. There have been delays, though, and Lofft said the families must qualify again. She said she expects to publicly name the families once the qualifications have been re-established.

She said Habitat for Humanity has not yet set a price on the two houses, explaining that the figures will be based on the cost to build the homes and the income of the families at the time of closing.

It will be Habitat for Humanity’s first brick-and-mortar project inside the Park City limits.

The groundbreaking ceremony is open to the public. Lofft said a roster of officials from City Hall, the County Courthouse, the Heber government and the Wasatch County government have been invited to the event. A representative from the Christian Center in Park City, a group that presses housing issues, is also invited, Lofft said.

A party celebrating the groundbreaking is scheduled at the No Name Saloon starting at 5:30 p.m.

People may RSVP for the groundbreaking ceremony and the No Name Saloon party by calling 658-1400 or e-mailing info@habitatutah.org. Someone must be at least 21 years old to attend the No Name Saloon party.

City Hall and advocates like Habitat for Humanity have long employed various assistance methods as they attempt to provide housing for people who otherwise would be priced out of the Park City market, the most expensive in the state.

The Habitat for Humanity groundbreaking is scheduled as City Hall is finishing a work force development off S.R. 224 outside the police station. The Snow Creek Cottages — 16 houses — is City Hall’s most ambitious work force development.

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