DENVER — Huge changes could soon be on the way for Northeast Park Hill as the City of Denver continues to try to solve the affordable housing crisis.
The city’s Department of Housing and Stability (HOST) is planning a multi-million dollar project that would add a 253-unit apartment and townhouse complex at the corner of 38th Ave. and Holly Street.
“I think that’s great,” Patty Raynolds said as she took a stroll through the open space just west of the fenced-off future housing project.
Raynolds certainly sees the allure of building here.
“It’ll add more diversity to the area,” said the Texan who recently moved to Colorado. “Coming from Texas and adjusting to the Denver cost of living was a big challenge at first. I knew coming out here was going to be a bit more expensive, but it was a lot more than I had planned for.”
Vernon Austin sees a lot of potential in this site, as well.
“I think it’s great,” Austin said. “I grew up in Park Hill. In the 90s, there was the good side and the bad side. This was the bad side. But that is changing, and an affordable housing complex should help.”
HOST, along with the Delwest Development Corporation, envision 253 units ranging from one-bedroom to four-bedroom units.
The units will be restricted to those making 30 to 80% of the area median income. For a family of three, 30% of the area median income is about $31,000, and 80% is about $80,000.
“If I fall into that range, I would totally look into it and be interested,” Raynolds said.
“I think it’s fascinating,” Austin said. “I would like to see this area get a little more evolved, escalated.”
The project includes 84 one-bedroom units, 104 two-bed units, 36 three-bed units and 29 four-bedroom units. The four-bedroom units will be three-story townhomes with an attached garage.
“Maybe it helps people get on their feet and they’re able to live in an affordable house for the first time ever,” Raynolds said. “So it’s awesome that it’s being offered in a really great area.”
The Safety, Housing, Education and Homelessness Committee approved a proposed loan agreement for about $8 million between HOST and the Delwest Development Corporation to provide gap financing.
The proposal will now move to a Denver City Council vote. If passed, it would be the largest affordable housing gap financing amount passed by the city council since the formation of HOST.