Watford City's housing dilemma

WATFORD CITY, N.D. - Gov. Doug Burgum will hold public listening session Thursday in Watford City from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., as part of his Main Street Initiative.

One of the topics of discussion will be how to attract and retain a 21st century workforce. Developers in the area say the number one way they are going to do that is by having available housing.

There are 13 single family homes under construction in the area.

Paul Ficara, a local Remax Broker and Stepping Stone Golf Course Community Developer, said there are currently no new move-in ready houses within city limits. Ficara said the biggest demand is for single-family homes, something his developing company is catering to. He says quality of life is really important to getting people to move and stay in town, and right now most of the people looking for homes are in apartments throughout Watford City, which are at 95 to 98 percent capacity.

"We've had quite a few clients as of late say they just want to find a piece of land that they can put a trailer on just because there's no options. I believe that some people are utilizing hotels to stay in, and some people are even reconsidering moving their families out here until there is housing available for them," Ficara stated.

He added that there will be 25 to 30 homes built within this year, and they plan to build 500 to 600 homes within the next six to 10 years in the Stepping Stone Golf Course Community.