Great Bend hopes new program will spur new housing

GREAT BEND, Kansas – The city of Great Bend has started a new housing development called Amber Meadows, and to live there, you won’t need to purchase the land to build on with the city starting a program called the land purchase agreement.

“We’re anxious to get it started,” said Howard Partington, Great Bend City Administrator.

More housing, it is something employers told Great Bend City leaders they need.

“They wanted to have more housing because they see that as an impediment to be able to grow or even get employees into the community.”

The city owns land and has already started to develop it. They’re going to build roads and a water and sewage system. Now, people won’t have to pay for the land if they build a house there. Instead, they’ll pay a $10,000 deposit to the city which they’ll get back when their house is finished.

“So, we get our money back over time, so it’s the city putting in a project and getting money back over the next 15 years to get it back for doing this because the need is there,” said Partington.

There are some housing requirements with the size and value of the home ranging between $150-$220,000.

A Kansas City company will start the project by building eight houses, leaving 11 plots open for others to build.

“I think it’s a great idea, and I commend the city for their efforts to get that done. You know it’s truly an amazing number to how few housing starts that a community of 16,000 like Great Bend has had, and they had to do something to spur that,” said Ross Vogel, Rural Housing Partners.

The first phase of the Amber Meadows Project has 19 plots, and, under the agreement owners can not rent the houses for ten years.

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