Jamestown Feels Housing Pinch - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Jamestown Feels Housing Pinch

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 Towns in oil country aren't the only ones growing.
One city to the east is also outgrowing their infrastructure and number of homes in the community.
Reporter Sarah Gustin takes you to the Buffalo City for the story.

A city that has sat still for decades is feeling the push.

(Dave Klein/ Stutsman County Housing Authority) "infrastructure is a huge issue. These areas, like Jamestown the town hasn't grown in 60 years."

The 16-thousand person town is expected to reach 25-thousand people by 2040.

(Dave Klein/ Stutsman County Housing Authority) "We do feel impacts from bakken spillover. We do have families where some work out in the western part and the other part stay here." 

Dave Klein with the Stutsman County Housing Authority says a recent study shows the need for at least 1200 housing units in the county.

Klein says the study was done before the announcement of a fertilizer and ethanol plant to be built in Spiritwood.

So he knows the need is even higher than 1200 units.

(Dave Klein/ Stutsman County Housing Authority) "Now we are looking a number that is 2 or 3 times greater than that."

He says a single apartment is renting for $850 dollars a month.

(Dan Buchanan / City Commissioner) "I think the big need and the big needs that are being met are the multi family apartment buildings. One recently just opened this year. it's 12 plex and I understand it's full or nearly full already." 

(Dave Klein/ Stutsman County Housing Authority)"Apartments are a big deal. We are well below a 1% vacancy rate. Most of them are renting far faster than they advertise them for. We are seeing quite a few spikes, nothing like Williston or Dickinson for spikes, but they are substational which is a concern for fixed income, elderly and disabled and younger families."

Klein says, its been difficult getting developers into Jamestown with so much growth out West. But the housing crunch is no longer just an oil country problem.

A lot of the people coming to town are young professionals.


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