Report gives a glimpse of housing future

By the year 2038, Cottage Grove will have more than 3,000 new residents according to the housing needs analysis conducted by EchoNorthwest for the city. 

The study, released in its draft form late last week, details the potential housing needs for the city in the future and potential solutions. 

The 77-page report details in the conclusions and recommendations section that the city may have the chance to work with South Lane School District, “on redevelopment of two sites that the school district is considering identifying as surplus to the district’s needs.” 

The report also suggests that the city examine rezoning existing medium density land and vacant high density land located near the edges of the city to allow multi-family housing development in commercial areas. 

The current housing shortage in the city mirrors that of nearby municipalities and cities around the nation as housing inventory drops and rents soar. Apartments in Cottage Grove can range between $650 and $1,200 per month while housing prices can soar, in rare cases, up to $500,000 according to popular home listing services. 

The housing analysis report predicts that Cottage Grove will grow from 10,740 people to 13,981 residents by 2038 and, due to the increase, will need 1,379 new dwelling units over the next 20 years. 

“The factors driving the shift in types of housing needed in Cottage Grove include changes in demographics and decreases in housing and affordability. The aging baby boomers and the household formation of millennials will drive demand for renter and owner-occupied housing…,” the report reads. 

Approximately 75 percent of Cottage Grove’s housing was single-family detached while the report predicts that 65 percent of new housing will be single-family detached as well. It also notes that 47 percent of the city’s households have “affordability problems” including a cost burden rate — paying more than 30 percent of income for housing — of 65 percent for renters. 

“Without diversification of housing types, lack of affordability will continue to be a problem, possibly growing in the future if incomes continue to grow at a slower rate than housing costs,” the report reads. “Under the current conditions, 634 of the forecast for new households will have incomes of $35,400 or less. These households cannot afford market rate housing without government subsidy.” 

The report suggested that Cottage Grove collaborate with affordable housing providers and develop a tax abatement program to promote affordable housing. 

To read the full report, visit 

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