Wenatchee Valley Business World




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Editor’s Note | Meeting the need for new housing

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Cover Story | Thinking big, building small: With land at a premium, developers use their creativity

Cover Story | Thinking big, building small: With land at a premium, developers use their creativity

Big dreams, small spaces: Rethinking development in a tight Wenatchee home market

The housing shortage in the Wenatchee Valley has no quick, easy or obvious solutions but building more housing seems like a logical first step.

In Wenatchee, however, land available for new housing is limited. Being locked in by foothills, a river and tight corridors to the north and south, there just isn’t a lot of land of new opportunity. One solution to that, is to build more homes in less space. Often called in-fill, this approach is popular is housing-strapped communities throughout the country.

In the case of Wenatchee, housing advocates and government officials see the obvious benefits of condensed neighborhoods in addressing the housing shortage. The Our Valley team working on affordable housing solutions has come up with a multi-pronged approach that includes things such as in-fill.

Some developers see the advantages of tighter housing, too. There are several such projects under way in Wenatchee and it is likely there will be more. When there is demand, the building industry tends to deliver.

However, a lot of the new development springing up throughout the region would hardly fit under the definition of “affordable,” as builders also see a demand for more higher-end homes.

East Wenatchee and Douglas County aren’t nearly as land-strapped and you can see new neighborhoods taking shape almost daily.

Though the housing problem here is troubling and in need of rapid attention, it also has created an economic boom. More people are employed building those homes and governments coffers benefit from the sale of the products needed to build them and the added property taxes that come with new homes.

In this edition of Business World we take a look at some of the projects under way in Wenatchee and East Wenatchee and how area governments are trying to help shape the cities of the future.

30 Under 35

I’ve already had several inquiries about the 30 Under 35 honors for 2018. As usual, we’ll start taking nominations in May and give about a month for people to get them in. It’s good to see such interest and not all that unexpected.

Each year, we recognize 30 people under the age of 35 who are becoming community leaders or showing great potential. In past years, it has been fascinating to meet so many of these up-and-comers.

We’ll give plenty of notice when nomination time comes.