News & Announcements
City Selects Habitat for Humanity and B.PUBLIC Prefab to Develop Affordable Homes In Historic District
City Intends to Donate Lot at
635 Alto Street for Construction of
Five High Quality, Low-Energy-Use Homes
The City of Santa Fe Community Development Commission, chaired by Councilwoman Renee Villarreal, reviewed four responses to a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) seeking a developer to build five (5) affordable homes on a City-owned lot. The highest scoring application was submitted by Santa Fe Habitat for Humanity, in collaboration with B.PUBLIC Prefab.
The evaluation criteria for the RFQ called for demonstrated capacity in four areas: development program (unit mix and affordability); concept and design (satisfaction of desired design elements and zoning conformance); experience and financial ability; and demonstrated project financial feasibility.
Mayor Alan Webber says: “By dedicating this lot for affordable, high-quality, sustainable housing in a desirable area of downtown Santa Fe, the City is taking another step toward creating innovative and equitable housing solutions. When we talk about preserving the character of our neighborhoods in ways that are inclusive, this is the kind of development we have in mind. Thanks to all the respondents for their proposals, and congratulations to Santa Fe Habitat for Humanity and B.PUBLIC Prefab on their winning plan.”
Edie Dillman, CEO and Co-founder of Santa Fe-based B.PUBLIC Prefab, says: "Habitat Santa Fe has been building homes for better comfort and energy savings for many years. By building this development with our pre-insulated structural walls, the community can see the shell of this project complete in a matter of days. Then we all can cheer staff, volunteers, and partner families as they complete construction. Our craftsman-built prefab is designed for 100-plus years of comfort and 80-90% energy savings. Now that is housing stability for occupants!"
The application proposes five homes, made affordable through Habitat’s unique approach of using the future homeowner’s “sweat equity,” in addition to many volunteer laborers, donated materials, and self-financed 0% interest mortgages. Kurt Krahn, Executive Director of Santa Fe Habitat for Humanity, estimates that these homes will cost approximately $185,000 to construct, with monthly housing payments of $600-$800.
“We are thrilled to pilot this approach with B.PUBLIC,” says Krahn. “The thermal envelope goes up in days rather than months, which simplifies framing, sheathing, and insulation into a single sequence, greatly reducing construction time and construction waste and resulting in a home with much lower energy use.”
The lot is located in a downtown historic district and within easy walking and biking distance to the Plaza and the River and Rail Trails. Current zoning allows a multi-unit structure with at least five units on the lot. The final design and development plan requires approval by the Historic Design Review Board.
Recognizing that land cost and site control can provide barriers to housing development, particularly affordable housing on an infill lot, the City proposes to donate the lot; the Governing Body must approve the final donation agreement. In addition, City code allows qualifying projects to receive other applicable fee waivers and incentives to bring down the cost of building and providing affordable homes.
Contacts: Terry Lease, Asset Development Manager; [bot protected email address]
Alexandra Ladd, Director, Office of Affordable Housing; [bot protected email address]