Innovative Affordable Housing Strategies

HB21-1271 creates three new programs for the purpose of offering grant money and other forms of state assistance to local governments to promote innovative solutions to the development of affordable housing across the state.

Due to the nature of stimulus funding, all three programs must spend funds by June 30, 2024. 

Read on HB21-1271

Annual Reports

Incentives Grant Program Annual Report   

Planning Grant Program Annual Report   

Who is eligible?
  • Municipalities, counties, and city/counties are eligible for all three programs. 
  • Federally recognized tribes are eligible for the Affordable Housing Toolkit Program only. 

Program Contacts

Mitch Hendrick

Program Manager


Phone: 303.548.9364


Robyn DiFalco

Program Assistant


Phone: 720.682.5202

The Planning Grant Program provides grants to local governments to help them understand their housing needs and adopt policy and regulatory strategies to qualify for the Affordable Housing Development Incentives Grant Program. 

HB-1271 Consultant List

Grant Program Details

  • The Planning Grant Program can fund housing needs assessments to help local governments guide their policy and regulatory approach to reducing barriers to affordable housing development, but the application for funding must also include work to adopt a qualifying strategy (from the options listed in the bill). 
  • Approximately $6,816,000 is available for Planning Grant awards. 
  • Individual Planning Grant awards are expected to be approximately $50,000-$200,000. 
  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to consult with their DOLA Regional Manager and to get input from CDO staff before submitting a Planning Grant Program application. 
  • Applications can be submitted anytime through the Division of Local Government Online Grants Portal. 


Funding Decisions

Upcoming Deadlines

  • The seventh and final round of applications closed on October 5, 2022. Final awards to be announced in late 2022.

Model Land Use Code (MLUC) Update

As part of the Planning Grant Program, the Community Development Office will update and publish model land use codes for municipalities and counties. For more information on the MLUC update process, see the Community Development Office’s Land Use Codes webpage.

Land Use Codes

Estimated project Timeline:

  • Preliminary MLUC concept identification and comment period (Spring 2023) 
  • MLUC refinement and detailed comment period (Spring 2023) 
  • MLUC draft finalization (Spring - Summer 2023) 
  • Refine draft MLUC with Subject Matter Experts at “Code Camp” (Summer 2023) 
  • MLUC Workshop and subsequent refinement at Colorado APA (September 2023) 
  • MLUC refinement and finalization (Fall 2023 - early 2024) 
  • MLUC Educational Outreach Series (Spring 2024) 

The Affordable Housing Development Incentives Grant Program provides grants to local governments to develop one or more affordable housing developments in their community that are livable, vibrant, and driven by community benefits. 

Grant Program Details

  • These incentive grants can help cover tap fees, infrastructure, parks/playgrounds and other needs and amenities that support the affordable housing project. 
  • Projects are encouraged to provide community benefits (e.g., covering tap fees or infrastructure costs for an affordable housing project and/with a child care center, for example). 
  • A small portion can be used for needs and amenities in the neighborhood where the affordable housing development is located. 
  • To qualify, local governments must adopt at least three strategies from the menu of policy and regulatory options listed in the program guidelines.


Funding Decisions 

Upcoming Deadlines 

  • The final round of applications closed on September 30, 2022. Final awards to be announced in spring 2023.

DOLA has set aside up to approximately $250,000 from the Affordable Housing Development Incentives Grant Program to assist eligible Colorado municipalities and counties with funds to support preliminary planning and analysis work that is often needed to get an affordable housing development project ready to seek financing.

Many communities and stakeholders have expressed a funding gap for this type of planning and analysis work. Eligible communities include local governments who have adopted at least three qualifying strategies as listed in HB21-1271. 

We are coordinating this program with Colorado Housing & Finance Authority’s Small Scale Affordable Housing Technical Assistance program.  


Funding Decisions

Upcoming Deadlines

  • This program is no longer accepting applications.  

DOLA competitively procured Root Policy Research, Plan Tools LLC, and SE Group to, among other items, create and revise guidance documents for qualifying strategies listed in HB21-1271. The guidance below is intended to support local governments searching for initial or additional thinking to help them achieve their local land use goals related to affordable housing development.

Strategies and Examples