Eugene Identifies 11 Potential Locations For ‘Safe Sleep Sites’ For The Unhoused
The city of Eugene has identified 11 potential 'Safe Sleep Sites' for the unhoused to legally stay while receiving services. The city aims to approve and open selected sites this fall.
The city reviewed more than 300 properties of varying types including properties currently owned by the city and county, properties listed for sale or lease on public real estate, and recommended sites by both the community and officials. The city then narrowed down the number of properties using criteria like accessibility, nearby social services, and transportation.
They have also collaborated with the Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce to engage the business community.
Most of the proposed sites, that sit on both private and public land, are near the downtown area, with some located on the West, North and East sides of Eugene. Additional sites will be vetted by the city.
Public Affairs Manager Brian Richardson said sites will be managed day and night, and will have similar rules as a low-barrier shelter.
“We also know that this program works, and that's why we’re going this way and we’re hoping that through building these safe spots that we can get people in here and get them the help that they need so that they can break that cycle of homelessness,” Richardson said.
Richardson says the city has a goal of making up to 500 spots available for vehicles and tents this fall. An ordinance passed on April 28 allows 'Safe Sleep Sites' to accommodate up to 60 vehicles and 40 tents per site.
Once sites have been approved the city, they plan on conducting outreach to neighbors and stakeholders in the areas of selected locations. Potential approval on the first round of sites by city council has been scheduled for June 23 during a Work Session. Councilors will receive an update on 'Safe Sleep Sites' and initial community feedback.
According to the city, people staying at two large temporary camps at 13th Avenue and at Washington Jefferson Park, will be prioritized and have the option to move into the new safe tent sites once they’re established. People living in their cars in industrial areas will have the opportunity to move into the safe vehicle sites.
Privately owned sites under consideration:
- 11th and Garfield
- W. 11th and Greenhill
- 151 River Ave
- 6th and Chambers
- 6th and Filmore
- 2nd and Cleveland
- Hwy 99 and Roosevelt
- 422 Stevenson Way
Publicly owned sites under consideration:
- Chase Commons Park at Garden Way and Commons Drive
- 2nd and Garfield
- River Road Station at River Rd. and Beltline.
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