Housing Authority has good year; affordable units take shape

The Housing Authority of Southeastern Utah had a fairly good year in 2019, according to a report offered by Executive Director Ben Riley at the Nov. 19 Grand County Council meeting.

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A workman at the MAPS Senior Living housing project on Park Lane near Moab Regional Hospital helps install a fire hydrant that’s being lowered by a heavy equipment operator on Monday, Nov. 25.
Photo by Doug McMurdo

Construction began earlier this year on the MAPS senior living housing project near Moab Regional Hospital.

The Wingate Village project in Spanish Valley has begun, all of the rent-to-own Crown homes in Moab, Monticello and Blanding are occupied, and existing complexes – Cinema Court and The Virginian Apartments – are essentially fully occupied with dozens of people on a waiting list.

Riley said about 60 people have written letters of interest for the 36-unit MAPS Senior Living project, a number he said could give developers confidence to build in Grand County.

Riley told council members the Authority in 2019 obtained its 10th Mutual Self Help grant. “This will allow our organization to grow as we continue to seek out more unrestricted funding sources,” he said.

There are 43 Section 8 vouchers in effect. Currently the waiting list to get into the program is closed, but Riley said he hopes to open it back up early in 2020. The wait time for those who seek Section 8 housing is between 18 months and two years, he said.

The Crown homes, which are rent-to-own buildings, are always full because the rent that is charged for three- and four-bedroom homes is relatively affordable, between $600 and $750 per month, said Riley. The authority could build Crown homes at the planned Arroyo Crossing subdivision on Spanish Valley Drive.