Housing the Homeless

As many of us do, I get countless daily newsletters in my box, from politics to design to food, etc. I read an article in Dezeen this week about the shipping containers used to build housing for the homeless in Los Angeles. The project cost $57M.

The facility was completed in six months encompassing 64,000 square feet. There are 232 units, including a common building with a commercial kitchen, laundry facilities, and a space for the administration team. There is also a dog park and landscaped courtyards.

Each apartment is furnished with a bed, microwave, mini-fridge, flat-screen TV, and a bathroom. Each unit also has its own HVAC unit. Not surprisingly, the facility opened in April and became booked to full capacity within a month.

There are over 60,000 homeless people in Los Angeles. Covid has made the situation worse for those who found that they could not keep up with their rent.

I am thrilled to see facilities like this finally getting built and moving people in. I hope that they are keeping data on the impact on each of the tenants’ lives. Having a roof over one’s head in a safe place in a country this wealthy is fundamental. I do not believe people want to live on the streets. Perhaps they were dealt a bad hand, pushed out of their homes as a child, or have mental health issues. Whatever the case may be, providing housing is a massive step in the right direction.