We advocate for policies that increase the level of public benefits in redevelopment projects. Working with the governing body of the RDA, our Board of Directors, we adopt resolutions and policies that address operations and programs. Our most recent project-guiding policies address affordable housing and sustainability in accordance with our mission.
Our Housing Development Loan Program (HDLP) Policy centralizes the application, underwriting, and approval process across all funding sources, providing a one-stop-shop for community partners. The HDLP provides low-cost financial assistance to incentivize the development and preservation of affordable housing within Salt Lake City municipal boundaries. While we have been providing affordable housing loans for years, this program is intended to streamline the application and approval process and better target resources to needs within the community for housing development loans.
Our Housing Allocation Funds Policy sets forth guidelines for allocating and directing resources for the development and preservation of housing.
Applicable to both residential and commercial projects, our Sustainable Development Policy requires all new construction projects receiving RDA financing be designed and built to be highly efficient and to operate without on-site fossil fuel combustion. This policy also applies to rehabilitation projects receiving $200,000 or more in RDA funds.
By raising threshold requirements, the new and restored buildings we are helping fund are now more energy efficient, all-electric, and climate friendly. Given that buildings are responsible for nearly 40% of annual global greenhouse gasses, this policy addressing how buildings in Salt Lake City are designed and constructed is tackling our local air quality issues directly at the source.
Developed with technical assistance from local energy efficiency and clean energy advocacy organization Utah Clean Energy, the policy includes three key requirements:
- First, projects need to be designed to achieve a federal ENERGY STAR score of 90 or higher;
- Second, buildings must also be designed to operate without on-site fossil fuel combustion (i.e., no propane or natural gas); and
- Third, the projects need to participate in Salt Lake City’s energy benchmarking program, Elevate Buildings.
To achieve a higher level of sustainability, the policy also outlines additional net zero guidelines for projects utilizing specific RDA financing programs. The construction and rehabilitation of on- and off-site net zero energy buildings – where 100% of the building’s electricity usage is supplied by renewable energy – are either required or incentivized, depending on the source of the RDA funding being sought.