THE POPLAR COMMUNITY
LOW INCOME, SWEAT EQUITY HOUSING
BOULDER, COLORADO

Project Data:

Owners
Affordable Housing Alliance
Housing Authority of the City of Boulder

Project Cost
$1.7 Million

Project Size
14 Single-Family Homes
on 1.41 Acres

Completion Date
May 1996

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF HOUSING & REDEVELOPMENT OFFICIALS (NAHRO)
1997 AWARD OF MERIT

AIA COLORADO DESIGN AWARD
OCTOBER 1998


H.U.D. BLUE RIBBON PRACTICES IN HOUSING & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AWARD
JANUARY 1998

COTTAGE LIVING
TOP 10 COTTAGE COMMUNITIES
JULY 2007

Project Description:

The Poplar Community consists of 14 owner occupied single-family homes which shape a small neighborhood around a central commons. The project was initiated by a non-profit development group, the Affordable Housing Alliance, and made possible by a joint venture with the Housing Authority of the City of Boulder. A livable density of almost ten units per acre still provides porches, private yards, and off-street parking. The site design creates a sense of community where neighborly interaction has in fact flourished.

Locally the project is viewed as an excellent example of creative yet affordable design in a city where many long time residents can no longer afford to buy a home. Homebuyers earned between 45% and 75% of the local median income, and each family contributed a minimum of 300 hours of their own "sweat equity" to the construction of the homes. Additional donations of material and labor reduced overall construction costs by $250,000. Resale restrictions ensure that the homes will always be affordable to low-income families.