In the face of a housing crisis — prices too high; availability too low — Denver wants to explore a creative way of boosting its affordable housing stock: land trusts.

This week, the city began the process of fielding proposals for community land trust concepts it hopes would help alleviate the city’s high cost of housing, which is squeezing some out of Denver neighborhoods.

The bid for proposals will enable city officials to study land trusts ideas and gauge the city’s level of investment or partnership.

“Given the impact and duration of such a model, we want our review of different land trust approaches to be wide and inclusive,” Eric Hiraga, executive director of the Denver Office of Economic Development (OED), said in a statement. “Innovative land trust models that achieve perpetual affordability are being explored here in Denver and across the nation. The right concept and managing partners could make a significant difference for Denver’s residents for decades to come.”

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