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Blacksburg seeks community feedback on voluntary development incentives to foster affordable housing and green building

Post Date:10/10/2018 2:01 PM

Housing affordability is increasingly a concern for renters and homeowners as Blacksburg and Virginia Tech continues to grow. Blacksburg strives to be an affordable place to live for all of its residents: students, service and retail workers, young professionals, families, and retirees. At the same time, the town has established ambitious goals to reduce community-wide greenhouse gas emissions. Energy associated with the residential sector is the single largest contributor to the community’s emissions profile.  

To advance the parallel goals of improving housing affordability while making Blacksburg’s housing stock greener and more energy-efficient, the town is exploring options to offer a set of economically persuasive and voluntary development incentives. The public is invited to attend the first of three community conversations on the topic, to learn about the key considerations and challenges associated with the creation of greener and more affordable housing options while also providing a setting for citizens to share their concerns and priorities.   

Community Meeting #1: Framing the Issue; Identifying and Understanding Citizen Priorities
                                               Monday, Oct. 29, 6:30 p.m., Blacksburg Community Center Program Room,
                                                725 Patrick Henry Dr.

Community Meeting #2: Exploring Scenarios and Potential Strategies
                                                Date/Time/Location – TBA (est. Feb. 2019)

Community Meeting #3: Review Draft Policies; Explore Tradeoffs & Implications of Inaction                                           
                                                Date/Time/Location – TBA (est. July 2019)

Throughout this process, which is anticipated to be completed by early 2020, the town will be partnering with the Virginia Center for Housing Research to explore policy options and conduct an economic analysis to determine the scale and type of incentives that will promote green-building and create affordable housing. A stakeholder team made up of developers, community members, advocates for affordable housing and green building, and individuals with policy expertise in land use, affordable housing, and residential energy will also provide ongoing guidance and feedback as the process unfolds.


For additional information:

Matt Hanratty
Town of Blacksburg Assistant to the Town Manager/Housing & Neighborhood Services Manager