Denver has grown into the progressive, artistic and entrepreneurial economy that we know today because of the creative and supportive communities who live and collaborate in our central neighborhoods. Due to drastically rising housing costs, many of these people are being pushed out to the suburbs, removing that important asset from our city’s fabric.
Without the allocation of more low- and mid-income housing, Denver is poised to go the way of many larger cities and lose the identity that made it a desirable place to live in the first place. We need to require more low- and mid-income housing in new developments and consider progressive housing options such as dense micro-efficiencies to house aspiring creatives and entrepreneurs until they’ve realized their potential in this great city and are able to improve their housing situation and give back to the greater economy.
While the five-year Housing Denver plan is a step in the right direction, we've not allocated nearly enough resources to tackling this problem. We have deficiencies in providing housing large enough for families to maintain in our city's core, we've lost sight of middle-income housing opportunities and we haven't scratched the surface when it comes to finding a housing solution for the ever-increasing homeless population. I believe we need to reconsider expensive and partially unnecessary projects like the I-70 expansion and use some of these dedicated taxpayer dollars to tackle this housing problem. We should also consider how we construct our neighborhoods in our city center, by keeping them live/work/play neighborhoods for the people that live there and not simply turning each into destination spots for folks around the city.