City announces third Safe Rest Village, this one near Multnomah Village

The office of Portland Commissioner Dan Ryan announced a third Safe Rest Village on Monday: Former Army Reserve Center Jerome F. Sears at 2730 SW Multnomah Blvd. The city says it will be home to 60 pod structures.

“The Sears site is used for emergency management – it once served as an emergency shelter – and it’s close to a Safeway, TriMet’s # 12 transit bus line, and it serves part of the city with no other shelters. It is a great place. The Safe Rest Villages team will place up to 60 pods on the Sears site, ”Ryan’s office said in a statement.

In 2016, during the tenure of Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, the city used the building for six months as a homeless shelter during the winter. It was to be used as an emergency management center by the city – which is its current function – but there was an interim period when the building was under renovation, and the city used it as an emergency shelter.

“To see a building we own that has light, plumbing, heating and showers [sitting empty] when we have about 500 women sleeping rough, for me that’s unacceptable, ”Hales said at the time.

Ryan said his six planned safe rest villages would contain heated pods for sleeping, communal kitchens, hygiene services, and behavioral and case management services. The villages will accept couples and individuals on the sites, as well as pets. The city will use a referral system to place people in safe resting villages. Recommendations can come from park wardens, first responders, Portland Street Response members, and social service providers.

The November 22 announcement means that two of the three proposed villages are west of the Willamette River. Ryan’s office has already been announced locations in downtown and southeast Portland. Visibly absent so far: the inner-eastern neighborhoods of Portland, where much of the landlord-homeless conflict is concentrated.

“The city and county’s unprecedented investment in homelessness that has just been passed will support these villages through our holistic approach, and our community engagement team will continue to work to build relationships between the housed neighbors. and not housed, ”Ryan said in a statement Monday. “Thank you to our county partners, especially Commissioner Meieran for her support for a village of rest and safety in her district. It’s time to say yes in my garden.

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