APCHA sign

The Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority will present numbers compiled through its relatively new HomeTrek database at today’s Aspen City Council work session, which is set for 4 p.m. The presentation is scheduled to be the second item on today’s agenda. 

A presentation at today’s Aspen City Council work session will offer a by-the-numbers look at Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority affordable housing information, courtesy of the authority’s new data tracking and online system, HomeTrek.

HomeTrek, which was implemented at a cost of $1.4 million, has been operational for nearly a year, replacing an antiquated paper-based system. Today’s data overview is intended to serve as background material to support the council’s upcoming housing retreat, according to a memorandum to council members from Assistant City Manager Diane Foster and APCHA Executive Director Matthew Gillen.

The memo says that while the presentation will include information on APCHA rental stock, it won’t contain specifics on those who live in rental units. The housing authority’s planned “Rental Survey” will be conducted early next year. Much of the information derived for the presentation was gathered through the “2021 Ownership Affidavit,” previously known as the “APCHA Census.” The name was changed in order to avoid confusion with the U.S. Census, the memo states.

“APCHA is committed to maximizing benefits and efficiencies from [HomeTrek], both internally and for the community,” the memo says. “APCHA is delighted to provide council with a high-level overview of the breadth and depth of data available in HomeTrek, and a glimpse into the capabilities and functionality of the system which APCHA will continue to expand and exploit. As a living database, HomeTrek is continually being updated and refined.”

The presentation will report that APCHA has 1,651 ownership units and 1,472 rental units for a total of 3,123 units. That compares with a total full-time population of 7,247 in the city of Aspen and 17,358 in Pitkin County (which includes Aspen), based on the 2020 Census. Of the 3,123 owned or rented units, 2,369 (75.9%) are located within the Aspen city limits, the memo notes.

One aspect of the presentation will relate to how the units fit into different categories of the affordable housing system. The categories relate to “maximum allowable income per household,” according to APCHA. Put simply, the higher the category level, the higher the maximum allowable income.

For example, category 1 is considered “low income,” while category 5 and “resident occupied” (RO) are considered “upper-middle income.” The RO category has no income cap and allows qualified higher-income households “the opportunity to own affordable housing for the benefit of the community,” APCHA says on its website.

Here are a few basic figures that may be discussed today, based on Foster and Gillen’s memo:

• Of the 3,123 units counted under APCHA ownership and rental stock, RO accounts for 901, or 28.8%. Category 3 has the second-highest number of units, 724, or 23.2%. Category 4 has 624, or 19.9%.

• Of both owned and rented units, 978 have two bedrooms (31.3%), 890 have one bedroom (28.5%) and 669 have three bedrooms (21.4%). There are 405 studio units (12.9%). The remaining units have four- or five-bedrooms.

• In the ownership category, 553 units (26.6%) are owned by individuals in the 50-59 age category. The second-highest number is 469 units (22.5%), owned by people in the 40-49 age group.

• Of the owners, 1,529 (79.4%) are working (not retired or semi-retired).

• APCHA lists 1,069 long-term and 276 seasonal rentals. There are other types of rental units not categorized as long-term or seasonal.

Today’s work session is set for 4 p.m. at Aspen City Hall, 130 S. Galena St. The APCHA presentation is the second item on today’s agenda.

Andre is a reporter for Aspen Daily News. He can be reached at andre@aspendailynews.com.