The city is moving ahead with the community’s vision for a year-round homeless shelter. After an extensive review of available properties that fit shelter siting criteria adopted by City Council last November, an ideal location has been identified and is currently in the acquisition phase. The city is expected to receive approximately $4.5 million in state and federal funding, including American Rescue Plan Act funds, that will go toward location acquisition and development. This is an opportunity to respond to the homelessness crisis and the community’s long-term call for year-round shelter.
This stand-alone commercial building situated within an established business area will require some rehabilitation, but is centrally located in an area near transit, with close amenities and limited impacts for existing residents. The building will offer space to serve adults experiencing homelessness with beds, meals, showers,
laundry, and an integrated medical exam room. This community asset, long planned and supported by community members, will further increase the stability provided to individuals while providing a critical link for transition to housing. This year-round shelter will be operated by Washington County in partnership with a contracted service provider.
Years of community discussions and direction have prepared us for this moment — with the necessary funding and an ideal location, we are ready to act and deliver a community asset that perfectly aligns with our city’s core values. City staff has already initiated conversations with a limited number of key stakeholders to ensure preliminary notification to those most interested and impacted. A Good Neighbor campaign will occur as the project proceeds to ensure community groups, businesses and residents in close proximity to the site are informed in advance of next project steps.