Duluth in need of housing as workforce grows

By KBJR News 1

May 6, 2014 Updated May 6, 2014 at 7:18 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - A recent study is showing Duluth's workforce is growing faster than the housing availability.

The study shows the housing shortage has a direct correlation to economic growth in healthcare services, aviation, technology, retail, and education sectors. Employment is expected to continue growing by up to 13% over the next seven years.
The study found that there is a need for up to 4,400 new housing units.

"I think what the challenge right now is that we need to recruit the production builders to Duluth to start building these units. If we're going to start building 150 new single family homes a year, we don't have those types of builders in Duluth right now" said Duluth Director of Business and Economic Development, Chris Eng.

Representatives of the city say it is developing a plan to tackle the problem by fixing up existing housing stock and putting the right tools and partners in place to create new housing.