Date of Award


Document Type

Terminal Project

Degree Name

Master of City and Regional Planning (MCRP)


Planning, Development and Preservation

Committee Member

Dr. Timothy Green (Committee Chair)

Committee Member

Dr. Mickey Lauria

Committee Member

Prof. Dan Harding


Regionalism has been a popular solution proposed to address numerous problems including environmental concerns and housing affordability. While it has been a well-cited concept, in practice regional coordination requires efficient municipal relationships and operational capacity that may be beyond the capabilities of many rural communities. Still, the problems remain and the current practices that address this regional problem in a piecemeal fashion are ineffective at creating long-term solutions. In order to determine the likelihood that regional coordination can be used in addressing growing housing affordability concerns in Western high-amenity and resort areas, this research presents the findings from two case study locations were selected: Flathead County, Montana and Gallatin County, Montana. Relying on in-person interviews across a range of actor classes and focus groups, the research details the current ability to coordinate regionally in these resort areas as well discusses the ability of these regional efforts to focus on housing affordability specifically. The findings show that while there is some reason to be optimistic that regional coordination on other issues will eventually lead to a regional focus on housing, resistance to thinking beyond city boundaries by local officials is likely to remain an impediment to addressing regional workforce housing issues.