Washoe Tahoe housing roadmap final draft presented to housing partnership group

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — The Washoe Tahoe Housing Partnership group met for the final time to discuss the Housing Roadmap, which outlines the steps that need to be taken to provide fair housing in Incline Village and Crystal Bay. 

The housing partnership group, made up of community members, business owners, government representatives, educators, and social and faith-based leaders from the Incline Village and Crystal Bay Area, have been meeting since 2020 to examine the housing needs of the community.  

“We want to accelerate housing solutions,” said Tahoe Prosperity CEO Heidi Hill Drum. “We want a thriving community.” 

Their meetings have accumulated to the Housing Roadmap, which was facilitated by the Tahoe Prosperity Center with the help of Agnew Beck Consulting, Easter River Public Relations, and SMR Development, and was funded by Washoe County, the Reno Housing Authority, the Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation, and the Offerdahl Family Foundation. 

“We created a roadmap of sorts,” Drum said. “It’s not a rule book to follow, it’s an outline for the community to look at. It’s got tons and tons of great information and detail in it. But again, you’re the community. You decide the priorities, the right programs, the right partnerships, the right policy changes.” 

The process of creating the roadmap took nine months, and contains five goal groups with a total of 18 priority actions in order to meet the goals. 

The first goal is community engagement and outreach, which is currently being done through the members of the housing partnership and the public relations group hired to help get the message out to the community. 

Other goals include identifying and raising public and private funds for housing, explore development and redevelopment options for workforce housing and potential inclusion of workforce housing on future development projects, updating policy and codes to support the preservation and production of workforce housing, and the creation and support of programs to address workforce needs. 

The need for the such intricate measures to be taken is the next step following the creation of the 2021 Washoe Tahoe Local Employee Housing Needs and Opportunities study. 

The study estimated that there is a need for 785 below-market workforce housing units over the next five years in order to address housing shortages in Incline Village and Crystal Bay, which has since impacted businesses in the community that are seeking employees. 

The housing shortage has forced relocation on many who work in the area, which has impacted the overall quality of services being offered. Many restaurants and shops must close early or for one to two days a week in order to accommodate their employees. 

The next steps in the process now that the Roadmap is complete is to continue community outreach, as well as present the final draft to the Washoe County Board of Commissioners for official adoption. 

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