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Does city desire family housing?

Many issues seem to be a perpetual part of Boulder City politics. One of those that always seems to arise during an election is how does Boulder City continue to keep our schools filled with children? Over half the population of Boulder City is older than 50.

The logic encourages that it might be useful to attract younger families to Boulder City for the city to remain demographically resilient.

In reading the Sunday, May 9, (Las Vegas) Review-Journal, I had to laugh. StoryBook Homes at Cadence in Henderson is building 1,500- to 1,800-square-foot homes starting in “the upper $300,000s.” StoryBook Homes is also building homes in Boulder City. I attempted to buy one of those homes on one of the cheapest lots. With minor upgrades the price became $511,000. Housing prices continue to climb throughout Clark County.

Boulder City appears to be missing a unified directive concerning housing. Since the community is controlling growth, it would benefit from strategic initiatives concerning city property offered for development using requests for proposals that meet community objectives. For example, the City Council worked together to accomplish the last subdivision on the back half of the municipal golf course, which provided the funds to buy the Eldorado Valley.

If Boulder City wants to attract young families, homes starting at $600,000 to $700,000 will not accomplish that objective. The city is limited to 120 development units per year.

If the community, if the City Council, wants to attract young families, new housing must be smaller in size like the Cadence community in Henderson. The minimum house in StoryBook Homes in Boulder City is over 2,000 square feet. That is most of the problem.

The City Council in its RFPs for StoryBook could have asked for smaller size housing in the range of 1,500 to 1,800 square feet to be built at the property called Boulder Hills Estates at Adams (Boulevard) and Bristlecone (Drive). Boulder City accommodated StoryBook Homes to build a subdivision. The price per acre of land to be sold at StoryBook’s request was going to be $300,000 per acre regardless of when StoryBook built the homes. While property values were rising, StoryBook continued to buy land for $300,000 per acre in the first, second and four years later, the third phase. What did Boulder City get for its developer largess?

Boulder City needs a strategic unified approach to government once again that works to gain benefits for the community instead of a developer. Hopefully, our new City Council will enjoy the benefits of creating a strategic initiative benefiting the community’s unified perspective.

The opinions expressed above belong solely to the author and do not represent the views of the Boulder City Review. They have been edited solely for grammar, spelling and style, and have not been checked for accuracy of the viewpoints.

Eric Lundgaard is a former mayor and City Council member and president of the Aquarian Theosophy Foundation.

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