Walkable Communities Drive Development in Western Mountain Towns
A recent study of high-country housing trends over the past decade by the Sonoran Institute, a nonprofit public-policy group that advocates for better management of growth in the West, show that homebuyers are willing to pay an average of 18.5 percent more for a house in a walkable mountain neighborhood in the Rocky Mountain West. The group’s 60-page study — “Reset, Assessing Future Housing Markets in the Rocky Mountain West” — also indicates that the supply of homes in or near downtown commercial areas is too small.
“There is growing demand for walkable neighborhoods, and it’s an untapped market opportunity,” said Clark Anderson, director of the Sonoran Institute’s Western Colorado Program.
Looking at homebuying trends in six Western mountain communities from 2000 to 2010, including Eagle, Buena Vista and Carbondale, the group identified a number of trends driving demand for what it called “compact walkable neighborhoods.”