The Town of Winter Park is in the process of developing a Strategic Plan for its Attainable Housing Program. The purpose of the Housing Plan is to provide guidance as the Town takes steps to alleviate our housing problem. This will allow the Town to focus its efforts as we try to ensure that those who work in Winter Park have the opportunity to live in Winter Park.
We would like your help in forming the Housing Plan. Please review the Draft Version of the Housing Plan and then take our short surveys. Your input will be invaluable as we move forward. We also encourage you to show up at one of the public meetings that we will be hosting as we move forward with the planning process.
The Housing Plan is divided into two sections: Vision and Goals; and, Action Items. At this point, the Housing Plan is still in its initial stages and it will undergo numerous revisions before it is adopted.
Vision and Goals
The Winter Park Attainable Housing Vision and Goals provide higher level guidance to the Housing Program as we make decisions about how and where to focus our resources. The Vision Statement defines why we need an attainable housing program and what we hope to accomplish with the program. The Goals help the Housing Program focus our efforts on those groups and individuals who need our services. They also help focus our efforts on those areas where they can best be utilized.
The Attainable Housing Plan's Action Items provides a chance for the Town to compare and prioritize its specific housing projects. In order to make the best use of our limited resources, the Housing Program must focus and coordinate its actions. Developing an action plan will enable the Housing Program to establish the necessary policies and procure the necessary tools to accomplish the Town’s goals.
The Housing Plan is a collaborative document. If it is to be successful, the Town will need the input of all of the stakeholders. These include local business owners, local residents and members of the workforce.
In Phase I, the Town Council reviewed the initial draft of the Plan before recommending that the Draft Plan be presented for public comments.
In Phase II, the Housing Staff will be soliciting comments and recommendations from the general public. Phase II will take several months as the Town solicits and processes feedback that it receives through online surveys, through a series of public meetings and through meetings with various community organizations.
Following the community meetings, we will solicit the input of the Planning Commission before returning to the Town Council for final adoption. This process will take several months.
The Housing Plan is organized as a hierarchal document. At the top level are the Town’s visions and goals for attainable housing. Any actions that the Town takes should be in furtherance of these goals.
The goals are organized by the various populations that must be served by any attainable housing programs. These populations are: 1) Homeowners, Potential Homeowners and those Transitioning between Housing Choices; 2) Renters and Seasonal Employees; 3) Housing Providers, Developers, Local Businesses and Employers; and, 4) the Citizens of Winter Park. Most programs and projects will serve more than one of these populations.
The goals are very high level and aspirational. They are not intended to represent actions, they are intended to inform actions.
The short answer is that there really is no difference between attainable housing, affordable housing and workforce housing. Although, there is a tendency to use the phrase “affordable housing” when referring to housing built with federal funds that is designed to be affordable to specific income levels (usually 40% or 60% of Area Median Income (“AMI”)). “Workforce housing” and “attainable housing” are generally used to refer to properties that are designed to be affordable to members of the local workforce whether or not the property is restricted by income level.
Housing is considered attainable when its cost does not exceed 30% of the household’s gross income. In setting price levels, housing providers rely upon the AMI as published by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”).