© 2024
NPR for Northern Colorado
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

News brief with The Coloradoan: How Gov. Polis' housing plan could impact Fort Collins

Four residential buildings under construction with wooden beams and an open dirt lot in the foreground, mountains in the background
Tanya B. Fabian
The Coloradoan
New construction at the Northfield development site goes up near East Suniga Road near Lemay Avenue on March 17, 2023, in Fort Collins, Colo. Gov. Polis' comprehensive housing plan looks to open up housing density with the goal of creating more affordable housing stock.

This is our first on-air conversation with our colleagues at The Fort Collins Coloradoan where we discuss the stories they're following.

This time, we discuss the implications of Gov. Jared Polis' new comprehensive housing plan.

“In broad strokes, it is a 100-page bill that looks to really open up density of housing, especially in Colorado's most metropolitan areas,” The Coloradoan Executive Editor Eric Larsen told KUNC. “It's one of these bills that looks to do a lot of the work that communities across Colorado have been talking about, which is, ‘how do we create more affordable housing stock?’”

The big question, Larsen said, is whether increasing housing availability will also increase affordability.

Fort Collins has been going through its own contentious land use code update. When the city proposed a sweeping code that mirrors much of what the governor’s plan proposes, there was significant opposition from residents, particularly about lifting occupancy restrictions. The pushback resulted in a citizen referendum.

Loosening residential occupancy restrictions is one thing the Fort Collins City Council is not considering in its land use rule updates, however. Fort Collins currently has a “U + 2” policy that permits no more than three unrelated people to share a dwelling.

It remains to be seen which will pass first: the land use code updates proposed by the city of Fort Collins or Gov. Polis' state-level proposals.

“The city right now is coming back to its engagement session with its own land use code revisions,” Larsen said. “Of course, we've only got about a month left in the legislature to see if this bill gets passed. So if that happens, you know, we'll see what supersedes city efforts and who gets to the finish line first.”

As a reporter and host for KUNC, I follow the local stories of the day while also guiding KUNC listeners through NPR's wider-scope coverage. It's an honor and a privilege to help our audience start their day informed and entertained.
Related Content