Twin Lakes (Gunbarrel) Affordable Homes
Colorful Aspinwall

Twin Lakes (Gunbarrel) Affordable Homes

The Boulder County Housing Authority (BCHA) and Boulder Valley School District (BVSD) have proposed building up to 240 affordable homes on two vacant fields near Twin Lakes in Gunbarrel. We are collaborating to help ensure that the housing is available for teachers, janitors, bus drivers, and other school district employees, as well as others in our community who need help with the high cost of housing.

“Where are the community members needing these services?” – a Boulder County Planning Commission member, wondering whether there is support for affordable housing at Twin Lakes in Gunbarrel in the midst of neighbor opposition. What do you think?

Do you live or work in Boulder County and struggle with the high cost of housing? The Planning Commission wants to hear from you about our proposal.


It’s easy to weigh in. Just click on the button above. Consider telling them how Boulder County’s housing costs are impacting you, and whether you think affordable housing is needed at Twin Lakes in Gunbarrel and why. Be sure to select “Twin Lakes” in the form to ensure your comment is included with this proposal. Please comment before the deadline, January 5, 2017.

  • See Key Facts about the Twin Lakes affordable housing proposal.

Twin Lakes (Gunbarrel): Once-in-a-Generation Opportunity for Affordable Housing

The rising crisis around housing affordability is impacting our workforce, our environment, and our economy. In the midst of high housing and rental costs county-wide, BCHA is working to increase the amount of permanently affordable housing available across Boulder County. The Twin Lakes/Gunbarrel proposal would provide up to 240 affordable homes for people who are struggling to make ends meet for themselves and their families. These are our school teachers, lunchroom workers, and janitors, our restaurant workers, child care providers, and police officers. The partnership between the housing authority and the school district is a once-in-a-generation opportunity – these collaborations are very rare, and available land that is suitable for affordable housing development is rapidly disappearing.

As part of our commitment to responding to requests from area neighbors, we are also proposing the inclusion of several significant wildlife buffers on the property (see below).

For 40 years, it’s been assumed in the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan that our Twin Lakes properties would be developed and annexed into the City of Boulder.

Re-Hearing

On August 30, 2016, a public hearing on the Twin Lakes affordable housing proposal was held jointly by the Boulder County Board of County Commissioners and the Boulder County Planning Commission. Six hours of public testimony was taken, including both opponents and supporters of the proposal. On September 21, the Planning Commission voted to support city and county staff’s recommendation for a medium density designation for our BCHA and BVSD properties, which would allow us to build up to 240 affordable homes there. In the weeks that followed, opponents of the affordable housing proposal submitted a request to the Planning Commission that they reconsider their vote. On Wednesday, October 19, the Boulder County Planning Commission discussed this request and agreed to reconsider. The reconsideration hearing is scheduled for January 18, 2017 at 1:30 p.m. at Boulder County Courthouse (1325 Pearl Street) in the Commissioners’ Hearing Room.

  • See BVCP-15-0001: Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan Update about the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan process.
  • See details about the upcoming (Jan. 18) Planning Commission meeting during which commissioners will re-consider their vote on our Twin Lakes affordable housing proposal.
  • Here is the City of Boulder’s BVCP web site, which also has details on the Comprehensive Plan process.

Wildlife Corridors and Buffers

At the September 21 Planning Commission meeting, commission members and some Twin Lakes neighbors expressed interest in seeing wildlife corridors and buffers included with plans and proposals related to our proposal for affordable housing at Twin Lakes. BCHA and BVSD have since worked to develop options for such corridors and buffers, and we have presented these to all four BVCP decision-making bodies. We understand the importance of corridors and buffers for wildlife movement, drainage and water quality protection, and setbacks for neighbors to the east of our properties, and we are committed to including them as part of a plan for development of affordable homes on the parcels should the staff-recommended Medium Density land use designation be approved.

We are also committed to providing other amenities, which could include a community garden, trail connections, and a small park.

  • See Key Facts about the Twin Lakes affordable housing proposal.

Interest Lists and Information Lists

Commitment to Listening and Transparency

BCHA has heard neighbors’ and others’ comments in multiple forums regarding the future of the 6655 Twin Lakes Road parcel, and we understand the range of concerns. BCHA is committed to a thorough, responsible, and transparent process as we continue to move forward with our assessment of the property. As additional studies are conducted and opportunities for public input are available, we will communicate through the above interest lists and other channels to help ensure that all interested in this assessment are informed.

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