Housing matters to economic development—it enhances economic performance and place competitiveness. Performing a housing study will help your community determine the total demand, the type of housing that’s needed, and the ideal price. Below is a case study of a TPMA Housing Analysis conducted in Knox County Indiana.
Next to the Illinois border in southern Indiana, Knox County is home to more than 36,000 people with 17,000 in the City of Vincennes (the oldest city in Indiana).
The Knox County Development Corporation (KCDC) is dedicated to promoting a strong business climate through partnerships with government, business, entrepreneurs, education, non-profits, and the community at large. KCDC contacted TPMA to better understand the county’s housing market and requested strategic action steps and approaches for future housing developments.
Most housing units in the county were occupied and the majority of housing stock was built before 1990. There was an overall lack of affordable workforce housing, which affects business attraction and expansion; in addition, there was a dire need for rehabilitation of existing housing.
TPMA compiled comprehensive data which included research on existing housing inventory, socioeconomic indicators, housing affordability, and best practices. Together with KCDC, TPMA held steering committee meetings and one-on-one interviews with local and regional stakeholders–including realtors, developers, anchor institutions, city and county leaders, community action organizations, and others.
The interviews focused on collaboration, current and future resident needs and preferences, housing vacancy, land constraints, special housing needs, barriers to home ownership, and challenges to development such as zoning and regulatory issues.
TPMA also worked with the steering committee to consider potential development sites in both rural and more urban areas of the county over the next 1-3 years, 3-5 years, and 5-10 years. Each property profile included market segments to be targeted, financial scenarios, and next steps. County housing goals and funding sources were outlined for infrastructure, neighborhood programs, downtown renovations, and small community housing development programs.
An analysis of data and stakeholder feedback enabled the TPMA project team to provide projected housing market trends and housing demand for owner and renter occupied housing through 2025. Household profiles were included to highlight examples of current and potential resident demographics, earnings, preferences, and other characteristics. County housing goals and funding sources were outlined for infrastructure, neighborhood programs, downtown renovations, and small community housing development programs.
The Knox County Housing Study improves the county’s competitiveness for future business attraction, retaining current residents, and meeting the needs of the workforce.
“We’ve gotten a lot of good traction from the study, and it helped demonstrate to local officials how dire our housing shortage is, and its connection to population decline. Plus, you all were great to work with.” –Chris Pfaff, Chief Executive Officer, Knox County Development Corporation
To learn more, contact Brett Wiler, Senior Director of Economic Development & Community Resiliency, at firstname.lastname@example.org.