Groundbreaking: Workforce/Affordable Housing Development in Keystone

KEYSTONE, CO —  The Village of Wintergreen, a new workforce/affordable housing project, broke ground this month in Keystone.

The 196-unit workforce housing project is located at 21771 U.S. Highway 6. in the heart of Keystone in Summit County and will be a mixed income, workforce housing community, offering a number of housing types to a variety of income levels. The unit types will include 120 workforce housing units and 36 units of seasonal housing.

The site of The Village of Wintergreen development.

Vail Resorts has partnered with Wisconsin-based construction company Gorman & Company LLC. to lease the land and build the project.

Hunt Real Estate Capital, a leader in financing commercial real estate throughout the United States provided a $34.4 million Freddie Mac loan to borrower Gorman & Gorman.

“The workforce housing is set aside in the area for individuals who are working year-round in Summit County as housing supply is in dire short supply and constantly being reduced,” noted Tim Hoppin, director at Hunt Real Estate Capital. “Due to high construction costs, and the recent growth of AirBnB and VRBO, affordable housing has become more of a crisis in an already burdened community.

The year-round workforce housing will be an important housing product for this market and is expected to attract a variety of renters including singles, roommates, couples, couples and a roommate, and families. There is strong demand for workforce and affordable housing in the market and The Village of Wintergreen benefits from its accessibility to numerous mountain resort areas, making it a highly marketable choice for permanent and seasonal workers in the area.

In a spring 2016 analysis of the Summit County market, just one percent of rental listings were priced for households earning 60 percent AMI or less. In most communities, households with incomes at or below 100 percent AMI comprise the core of the rental market.

Of the units, rents on 120 units will cap to an average rental rate set at the 100 percent Area Median Income (AMI) level. Made up of one-and two-bedroom apartments, the homes will be available only to those working at least an average of 30 hours per week on an annual basis in Summit County. There are no income limits for these residents.

Proposed project amenities will include a community dog park, playground, community garden and extensive community open space with direct access to hiking trails. In addition, the property will be serviced by a ski area shuttle bus, which is a highly desirable trait in this market. The seasonal buildings will also include a common laundry room.

According to Gorman’s Colorado Market president Kimball Crangle, the low-income and seasonal units are expected to be complete fall 2019, with the next phase of units to be finished at a later date.

Photos courtesy of John Birkey of Norris Design.

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