Mariposa County Integrated Mobility and Housing Strategy
The County of Mariposa, in partnership with Yosemite National Park, spearheaded an effort to address the housing and mobility challenges that negatively impact the quality of life of Mariposa County residents and visitors. The integrated housing and mobility approach analyzes infrastructure and community resources, and applies an understanding of local challenges ranging from traffic conditions to development challenges and environmental hazards.
Ultimately, it establishes a vision to incentivize and support affordable housing and mobility options for all Mariposans. By addressing the needs of county residents, beneficial effects will extend to visitors and tourists that also rely on county infrastructure. Paired with this are new models of workforce housing that create community places, increase affordability and supply of housing, and foster healthy lifestyles for a more livable Mariposa County.
The partnership with Yosemite National Park is important because the Park is both a major attraction for visitors and residents of Mariposa County, and also a major employer. In order to protect the natural resources within the Park, there are major spatial constraints on development, and there is insufficient housing to accommodate the wide network of Park visitors, Park employees, and the range of non-profits and concessioner employees that are vital to park operations. Housing options outside the Park are affected by the conversion of the historic long term rental market to short term rentals due to high demand by Park Visitors adding additional strain on year-round housing options for Mariposa’s workforce at all price points. The limited housing options force many employees to make difficult and unsustainable choices. They can either find housing farther away from the Park, which further stresses the already stressed transportation network, or they can seek employment outside of the Park and County, depleting Yosemite’s workforce and contributing to a rural gentrification effect.
This project seeks to address this deficiency by planning for transit-oriented development in a rural context, with housing and transportation that connects Mariposa and other key county gateway communities with its major workforce center – Yosemite National Park. The project examines the key nexus between workforce and special needs housing development and an active transportation network, through operational strategies, policy recommendations, and physical site plans. By addressing the needs of these county residents, beneficial effects will also extend to visitors and tourists that also rely on county infrastructure. Paired with this are new models of workforce housing that create community places, increase affordability and supply of housing, and foster healthy lifestyles for a more livable Mariposa County.