WATERVILLE — A conference planned for Tuesday in Waterville will focus on developing practical options to address the area’s housing crisis, according to organizers.

Peter Phair, the conference chairman, said this week the event is planned for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at The Elm at 21 College Ave. The public is invited to attend in person or virtually.

A housing committee appointed by the Waterville City Council has been meeting regularly since spring to discuss the housing crisis facing the area, and what can be done to address it.

Headed up by City Councilor Rebecca Green, D-Ward 4, the panel is focusing on all aspects of housing, including the lack of housing in general, not only for those who are homeless but those who want to live and work in the city. Developing affordable housing is also a committee priority.

The event’s keynote speaker is Jeff Levine, owner and principal of Levine Planning Strategies of Portland. He is an urban planner who works on affordable housing issues in the state, according to Phair, executive director of the Waterville Area Habitat for Humanity and a member of the city’s housing committee.

The conference, sponsored by the Waterville Housing Committee, is scheduled to include three-panel discussions. Phair said he wants attendees to leave the conference with information on the steps needed to help solve the crisis.

“We’re hoping that this is a conversation that really spurs ideas and actions,” he said.

By Wednesday, about 55 people — mostly city officials and professionals who work on housing matters — had registered to attend the conference, but Phair said he hoped more residents and those affected by housing issues sign up because their input is important.

Will Harper of the Kennebec Valley Council of Governments is to serve as the conference facilitator, and David Pelton of the Kennebec Valley Community Action Program is also expected to attend the event.

Along with Green and Phair, the members of the housing committee include City Councilor Flavia DeBrito, D-Ward 2; Mina Amundsen of Colby College; Patric Moore, a representative of the Central Maine Apartment Owners Association; Nancy Williams of the Waterville Community Land Trust; and Paula Raymond, a member of the South End Neighborhood Association.

Those wanting to register to attend the conference in person should click here.

The live stream is accessible.

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