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Study Aims to Boost Tulsa's Affordable Housing Stock In, Near Downtown


Tulsa’s Economic Development Commission will fund a downtown and near downtown housing study to be started early in 2019.

Economic Development Commission Chair Elliot Nelson said higher land values and increased density there are challenges.

"So, you have more expensive land and more expensive construction, and then the output of that on a market basis is the units are more expensive," Nelson said.

The new study follows up on a 2010 report showing demand for downtown housing but a lack of affordable options. Nelson said that’s holding up further downtown development.

"If it’s really about reurbanizing the city — and that means people being able to live and work in the same place — we have a lot of downtown employees that can’t afford to live in the same place they work, and we need to fix that," Nelson said.

A request for proposals will go out next month, and a report should be done in the summer.

The study will potentially be used later in 2019 when the city awards downtown housing funds to subsidize more affordable projects. Nelson said they need to offer rents in the $800 to $1,000 range.