The Virginia Housing Development Authority’s (VHDA) recently awarded the New River Valley Regional Commission funding through its Community Impact Grant program for a regional and local housing study. The 18-month study is comprised of three main phases and will include both intensive data analysis as well as stakeholder and public outreach at the regional and local level.
The study will examine the effects of the university student rental market on overall housing availability and cost, the mismatch of existing types of housing units with housing preferences of current buyers, development pressures in rural areas near growing urban centers, the lack of housing options for retirees and residents ‘aging in place’. The study will also work to identify strategies that can encourage preservation and rehabilitation of aging and deteriorating housing stock and ensure that housing is available and affordable to residents across the range of income levels. Assessing locality-specific trends in the context of the region will help to identify challenges, opportunities, and appropriate implementation strategies for each jurisdiction.
Two stakeholder groups representing local governments and regional housing industry organizations will meet regularly throughout the development of the study. They will provide input on the progress of project tasks, engage their peers to participate in the research process, and build the capacity of these stakeholders to understand housing barriers and solutions for each locality in the New River Valley.The housing study will culminate in both a regional plan and individualized action plans for each locality.
A public survey has already been released for citizens to provide information and insight about their own housing experiences in the New River Valley. If you are interested in participating, the survey can be found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/nrvhousingstudy
For more information contact, Jennifer Wilsie, NRV Regional Commission at: firstname.lastname@example.org.