The population of Utah County is expected to double by 2050, which raises many questions—what about road congestion? Education? Water and air quality? Where will people live with real estate prices rising 10% per year?
Provo City continues to make significant progress toward making affordable housing more available to its residents. Starting in 1972, the Provo City Housing Authority began assisting low-income and homeless individuals with high rise units. In 2003, the Utah Regional Housing Corporation was formed, and currently manages 210 units, from the historic Maeser School to downtown motels for “hard-to-house” individuals. Cities are often blamed for a lack of affordable housing, but Provo is working to balance the needs of its existing population, while preparing for growth on the horizon. Provo strives to make the most of the tools at its disposal—like planning, zoning, economic development and redevelopment—to ensure the sustainability of its housing, transportation, water, power, and waste management.
State legislation (Senate Bill 34) requires that cities comply with two out of 21 items related to housing. Provo City has implemented 13 of those regulations. In preparation for significant near-future growth, Provo City has done much to help lower costs. We have discounted land values and cleaned up contaminated properties, donated land, and modified parking requirements to take pressure off developers. Lastly, Provo has provided financial support to the Utah Community Land Trust, which works to secure long-term housing solutions for current and future residents.