Colorado Bill Would Tie Transportation Funding to TOD

The proposed law would require cities to meet certain housing targets near transit or risk losing access to a key state highway fund.

1 minute read

April 25, 2024, 9:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Colorado State Capitol Building

Nicholas Courtney / Shutterstock

A proposed state bill in the Colorado legislature would wield the state’s financial power to encourage transit-oriented development (TOD).

As Andrew Kenney explains for CPR News, HB24-1313 would cut off access to the state’s Highway Users Tax Fund (HUTF), which funds transportation infrastructure, to cities that don’t allow dense development near transit. “The bill sets a target number of housing units for each city, based on how many miles of high-frequency bus and train lines cross the city. The cities would then have to ensure that they have ‘zoning capacity’ for that level of density near transit lines — basically, that their own development rules aren’t preventing builders from reaching those targets.”

The bill would apply to cities that have high-frequency bus or rail service and includes some incentives including tax credits for affordable housing.

Critics of the bill say it amounts to regulatory overreach and could pose a danger to Coloradans traveling on local roads if cities have to cut back on maintenance and services like snow plowing. “If the HUTF provision were to be removed, the law still could include legal requirements for cities to revise their zoning, but the state would have one less option to gain compliance.”

Tuesday, April 23, 2024 in Colorado Public Radio

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