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The Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth (CCPEG), in conjunction with the Chautauqua County Department of Planning and Development and housing-related stakeholders from across the County, has announced the completion of a countywide Housing Market Assessment and Development Strategy.

The assessment, which was conducted by MRB Group in conjunction with CCPEG’s Housing Development Work Group partners, provides insights to the existing housing stock and market conditions, as well as current and future anticipated gaps. These insights, combined with stakeholder input, provided the foundation for the development of actionable strategies to address housing gaps and needs in Chautauqua County.

This Strategy was developed to help housing providers, municipalities, Chautauqua County agencies, and not-for-profit organizations identify solutions and prepare for future development that will ultimately meet the needs of the community’s residents. It summarizes existing housing initiatives in the County, provides demographic and economic data, provides data-rich information on the current housing stock and real estate market, and offers strategies and recommendations for Chautauqua County and its partners to encourage and facilitate housing solutions that align with local priorities. Recommendations from this study will be used to guide housing policy decisions, encourage public-private collaborations, and be an instrumental tool for leveraging future funding opportunities.

“The Housing Market Assessment and Development Strategy is not the final product. It is how we implement the Strategy’s action items that will start to move the needle on improving existing housing conditions and creating new housing choices across the County. The top 19 action items have been prioritized in the Housing Strategy, and CCPEG’s Housing Workgroup, municipalities, and partners will work together in order to carry out these action items,” said Mark Geise, Deputy County Executive for Economic Growth and Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency /Chautauqua Region Economic Development Corporation CEO.

“Everyone involved in this project, from the Planning staff to the consultants and our stakeholders, took extra care to ensure this study was comprehensive in scope and inclusive of all the various housing needs in our county. I’m confident that this will be a valuable tool to facilitate both public and private investment,” said Gina Paradis, CCPEG Housing Workgroup Co-Chair.

“We want to thank our partners and stakeholders who participated in creating this assessment. By better understanding our housing market, we can take the steps needed to bring in new resources to the County and address the challenges that we are facing,” said Josiah Lamp, CCPEG Housing Workgroup Co-Chair.

“Meeting our current and future housing needs is a critical component in achieving our overall County economic development goals. While there are so many factors outside of our control, this Housing Strategy is a roadmap for us and the numerous partners involved in this effort to move the needle where we can,” said Nate Aldrich, Chautauqua County Economic Development Coordinator and CCPEG Manager.

Among the many recommended actions, Aldrich gave some examples of actions CCPEG itself will take, such as: identifying, preparing, and marketing top sites for development; expanding collaboration with the Chautauqua County Land Bank to address quality, safety, and blight issues; and identify vacant and underutilized sites and buildings in areas within and near downtowns, villages, hamlets, and main streets, and initiating pre-development work, among several others.

“This Housing Strategy is a comprehensive, countywide look at our current housing stock, as well as a guiding document for improving our existing neighborhoods and attracting new housing developments to our County,” said Rebecca Wurster, CCPEG Planning Coordinator. “One common request that municipalities receive when a housing developer comes to their community is the request for a housing market study. Up until now, our municipalities could not provide this document. This Strategy includes housing data and future housing needs that developers are looking for.”

Partners for the Housing Strategy include CCPEG, Chautauqua County Department of Planning & Development, Chautauqua County Health Department, Chautauqua County Land Bank, Chautauqua Opportunities Inc., Chautauqua Home Rehabilitation and Rehab Corp., City of Jamestown, City of Dunkirk, Village of Sherman, and all other municipalities who participated.

The full Strategy can be found on the CCPEG website, CHQPartnership.org.

About CCPEG – The Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth (CCPEG) serves as the main convener of economic development partners and resources to advance key projects that achieve economic prosperity in Chautauqua County. It also serves as the catalyst and broker of resources for advancing economic prosperity efforts and is the central coordinating entity for the formation, retention, development, and attraction of quality jobs and advancements to the quality of life. It is an initiative of the Chautauqua Region Economic Development Corporation (CREDC). For more information visit CHQPartnership.org.