Bids are currently being accepted by the City of Las Cruces for the development and construction of a new affordable housing project that could include more than thirty units.
What is being called the Sierra Tract project will see the construction of those new housing units on 4.5 acres not far from the Sierra Middle School.
That land is near the intersection of Spruce Avenue and Lewis Street and was acquired by the city as part of an exchange with the Las Cruces Public Schools system.
The land that the city gave to the school system in return is near the Mayfield High School.
Public input meetings regarding the scope and scale of the project have since been held, with talk centering on the building of eight single-family detached homes, and perhaps a dozen townhomes.
A blueprint for the development was approved by members of the Las Cruces City Council earlier this year.
Working with the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development, Las Cruces has been trying to fill what is thought to be a gap of some 5,000 needed affordable housing units.
According to a document released in the fall of 2016 called the City of Las Cruces Affordable Housing Plan, roughly 48 percent of households in the city have incomes of less than $35,000, making it difficult to find adequate housing.
The need for new affordable housing in Las Cruces is all the more pressing, given that the average median home price, according to the website Zillow, is just under $170,000.
By Garry Boulard
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