Boulder’s boom threatens ‘normal working folks,’ resident says

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Photo: CU Boulder campus (iStock)Hippy town hits it big. That’s how Nancy Stevens describes Boulder in a recent newspaper commentary.

Stevens, a 25-year resident of the city and chairwoman of First Western Trust Bank, advises wealthy people on what to do with their money. And, right now, she says more people are coming to her because companies in town are growing and some are selling for big bucks.

In her commentary in Boulder's Daily Camera, Stevens says she isn’t sure she likes what all that success is doing to her beloved city.

"This is a city that already has a wealthier vibe than it ever has, and our housing costs are only second to Aspen's in the state of Colorado," Stevens writes. "We may see both of those trends continue. This is crowding out affordable housing; normal working folks can't afford to live here anymore."

She adds that "higher rents downtown make it tough for local merchants to compete on the outdoor pedestrian Pearl Street Mall, and only national chains can afford the primo retail space."

Stevens talks with "Colorado Matters" host Ryan Warner about her thoughts on the shifts happening in Boulder. Then, Warner talks with Joel Dyer, editor of the Boulder Weekly newspaper, about the effects these trends on other towns in Boulder County. That's where the people who are priced out of Boulder may move. But those places are getting pricy themselves.

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