Kansas Housing and the state’s Office of Rural Prosperity announced the results of the state’s first comprehensive statewide housing needs assessment undertaken in nearly 30 years. The report’s release marks the culmination of a year-long project to evaluate current housing needs and growth opportunities, including goals to guide future housing development efforts.
“We’re so pleased to have the data we’ve long needed to chart a path forward in addressing our state’s housing needs,” said Ryan Vincent, Executive Director of Kansas Housing. “With these recommendations in hand, it’s time for state and local leaders to work together to implement our shared goals and expand quality, affordable housing across the state.”
RDG Planning & Design, which has coordinated a number of community housing studies across Kansas, conducted the in-depth study over the past year. Analysis included a series of 71 virtual and in-person listening sessions with nearly 1,000 community participants across the state, as well as meetings with housing stakeholder groups. Consultants conducted a statewide survey of more than 4,400 respondents and analyzed census data to develop a comprehensive picture of the state’s housing needs, current resources, and growth opportunities.
The final step of the assessment process included a statewide tour of nine in-person and virtual community presentations in late November and early December. The tour attracted approximately 450 participants, exploring regional findings and inviting feedback to incorporate into the final report.
The study revealed several key goals to address future housing needs:
- Prioritize middle income housing
- Diversify housing stock
- Extend housing security
- Reinvest in older housing stock, including vacant units
- Address the building trades labor shortage
- Extend existing human capital resources
State leaders stressed that no one entity will be responsible for implementing the recommendations. Rather, the study’s goals will be achieved through collaboration between state and local leaders, the public and private sector, and community and economic development groups.
To learn more about the assessment and view the final report, visit the Kansas Statewide Housing Needs Assessment webpage.
Governor Laura Kelly and former Lieutenant Governor Lynn Rogers created the Office of Rural Prosperity (ORP), a nonpartisan initiative established in part to ensure that rural Kansas is heard and represented in the statehouse. The ORP aims to streamline rural policy while focusing on the issues that matter to rural Kansans. During the ORP’s 2019 and 2020 statewide listening and action tours, housing was brought up by leaders in every region of the state as a vital component of recruiting and retaining workers, families, and entrepreneurs to help rural Kansas thrive.
Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC) is a self-supporting, nonprofit, public corporation committed to helping Kansans access the safe, affordable housing they need and the dignity they deserve. KHRC serves as the state’s housing finance agency, administering essential housing and community programs to serve Kansans.