Park City readies to build affordable Old Town housing
The construction is expected to commence in coming weeks
Park City-hired workers are preparing to begin the development of work force or otherwise affordable housing projects along the lower Park Avenue corridor, an important step in City Hall’s ambitious plans to ensure more people are able to afford the city’s resort-driven real estate market.
The municipal government over the years acquired a patchwork of properties on Park Avenue and Woodside Avenue one block to the west. The parcels are on the 1300 blocks of the streets. They include the land where a fire station once was located on Park Avenue, land behind that parcel, a historic home on the 1300 block of Park Avenue next door to the former fire station and a vacant lot on the 1300 block of Woodside Avenue. The overall project is known as Woodside Park.
Caution tape was recently posted to illustrate property lines. Jason Glidden, the housing development manager at City Hall, said construction fencing will be posted after Labor Day. Construction is anticipated to begin in October. The Park City Planning Commission on Wednesday granted a series of approvals.
The project at the location of the former fire station, stretching between Park Avenue and Woodside Avenue, will include four houses, an eight-unit residential building and a parking lot with room for 13 cars.
“We’re building affordable housing within the city limits, close to the Old Town area,” Glidden said.
The project is also seen as creating a pedestrian corridor between City Park and the Park City Mountain Resort base area, something City Hall officials have long desired as they encourage alternate modes of transportation. A walkway between Park Avenue and Woodside Avenue is included in the plans.
Demolitions are planned in coming weeks as the crews prepare the land for construction. The former fire station and a garage fronting Woodside Avenue will be taken down. The demolitions are scheduled in September.
Park City plans to sell the housing units. A timeline is not set for the sales. City Hall expects to recoup much of the costs of the development from the sales. Glidden said officials continue to finalize construction details. A construction schedule has not been set and it is unclear when the units will be ready to be put on the market. Sale prices have not been finalized, either. The prices will be heavily influenced by the construction costs and the income range of target buyers. The prices, though, are expected to be well below market prices in the surrounding neighborhood. Old Town real estate has been especially hot since the depths of the recession with prices commonly reaching into the seven figures.
City Hall leaders are pursuing an aggressive housing plan with projects in several neighborhoods. The leaders see work force or otherwise affordable housing as a means to ensure economic and social diversity in Park City. The developments are also seen as steps in reducing commuter traffic.
Two people indicated in interviews they are considering mounting campaigns for the Park City Council, a signal the City Hall election could attract an intriguing slate of candidates in a year when the majority of the five seats are on the ballot.