Breaking New Ground with Eagle County Schools
Eagle County Schools and Habitat Vail Valley will host a groundbreaking ceremony on Thursday, May 30, 2019, at 4:00 p.m. to celebrate the start of construction of 12 new homes in Gypsum. The workforce housing partnership between Eagle County Schools and HFHVV is the first of its kind among 1,000+ Habitat for Humanity affiliates nationwide.
The two organizations started conversations more than two years ago. Eagle County Schools identified an unused parcel of land in their inventory along with a need for employee housing. The 2.3-acre parcel, known as IK Bar, was ultimately transferred to HFHVV. In exchange, HFHVV will give preference in its family selection process to Eagle County Schools applicants. until the number of incremental families equals the number of homes (12 units) that can be constructed on the land.
To date, five Eagle County Schools staff members have been selected for HFHVV’s homeownership program. Rosa Velasco and Vicky Reyes are in the final stages of completing their homes in Stratton Flats. Elena Chavez, Elvia Gonzalez, and Guillermina Velasco will begin construction soon on their homes in the new IK Bar neighborhood.
“The housing shortage is immense in our valley, and it is the biggest barrier to attracted and retaining employees,” explained Sandy Mutchler, Chief Operations Officer at Eagle County Schools. “This partnership helps the need, and the Maloit Park development will help, but the community has to continue to work together to develop more moderately priced or deed-restricted property for the people at the heart of the community.”
Habitat for Humanity Homeownership
HFHVV sells homes to families with income between 35 and 80 percent of the area’s median. Or, approximately $75,200 per year for a family of four. Future HFHVV homeowners put in 250 hours of volunteer work, per adult, for the organization. They then pay a zero-interest mortgage, originated by HFHVV, to pay off the construction cost of the home. Eagle County Schools staff own approximately 20 percent of HFHVV’s current homes.
“The partnership between Eagle County Schools and Habitat is allowing me to become a future homeowner in such a wonderful community,” said Elvia Gonzalez, Operations Specialist of Facilities Maintenance for Eagle County Schools. “The partnership truly makes me feel like I’m valued and supported by the staff. I am very thankful to work for and to be a part of the Eagle County Schools team.”
At IK Bar, HFHVV will build 3BD/1.5BA homes. They received 70 applications during their last homeownership selection cycle. The next application window opens on June 1, 2019, and closes in September. Visit HabitatVailValley.org/own-a-home or call 970 748-6718 ext 125 to apply in June.
Groundbreaking Event Details
The Groundbreaking Ceremony will take place on Thursday, May 30, 2019, at 4:00 p.m. The event will take place at the corner of Whitetail and Grundel in Gypsum. Parking is available at Red Hill Elementary School.
In the News
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“Habitat for Humanity, Eagle County Schools Partner for Workforce Housing
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Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley Surprises Gypsum Teacher with News of New Home
Vail Daily | 08.26.18
Gypsum Approves 12 New Habitat Homes at IK Bar Ranch Property
Vail Daily | 05.28.19
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Vail Daily | 06.03.19
Habitat, Schools Break Ground on Groundbreaking Project