COLORADO SPRINGS — A unique rental housing project called Mosaica, is launching with a plan of bridging the affordable housing gap in Colorado Springs. It is happening just south and east of downtown Colorado Springs.
The vision is unique in the business of rentals. "They're in five and sixplexes. We call them, the great houses,” said Developer Darsey Nicklasson, “They have big front porches, it's designed around shared backyards. "One bedroom units, also two, three and a few rare four bedroom units.Designers see a need for multi-generational family living.
These are going to be rental units for working people. The complex is a departure from the successful luxury apartments in downtown Colorado Springs developed by Nicklasson. Her building experience merged with her sense of community a couple years back with a plea from Colorado Springs Mayor, John Suthers for more attainable housing. "I looked around and I realized I'm surrounded by a wonderful team of people that helped to build Blue Dot Place downtown and Casa Munde Downtown," said Nicklasson. She called on the team to join her brainstorming on this project.The build is starting after months of creative thinking. The intent is a bridge price point between high end and supplemented low-income housing.
The right price requires figuring out more cost-effective ideas. One example was developed by collaborating with the utility company. "We worked very closely with Colorado Springs Utilities to come up with a new idea, a new way of doing water and sewer lines and we saved a million dollars there," said Nicklasson.
The project has a pool of local investors who want it to succeed. "They're local business owners,” said Nicklasson, “They recognize that their employees are having a difficult time finding housing at an affordable price."
The developer and investors also see opportunity with the project’s southeast Colorado Springs location. "I think there is a really strong sense of community here and it's a hidden gem in our city It has a tremendous amount of diversity. It has a tremendous amount of culture,” said Nicklasson.
More than 200 units will be built. Some of the first units could be available for rent in about a year. The time-line for all the work is close to three years.