Two sites in Downtown Los Angeles properties have been tapped to serve in the effort to increase transitional and permanent supportive housing for the city's homeless population, according to an announcement this week from 14th District Councilmember Jose Huizar.
On April 16, the City Council voted unanimously to approve lease terms for a temporary emergency housing facility at 1426 Paloma Street - a clothing warehouse just north of the 10 Freeway. The vote by the City Council will allow on-site improvements and outreach to begin, with a targeted opening date of summer 2019.
The Paloma Street shelter will be the second opened in the Downtown area, following the pilot "A Bridge Home" facility in El Pueblo.
In the 90-day period prior to the anticipated opening of the facility, outreach teams will be deployed to inform homeless residents about the new shelter, and provide an opportunity to sign up for its waitlist. Open opening, each resident of the facility is assigned a dedicated caseworker who connects them with facilities, including services, job training, addiction programs, therapy, and transitioning into long-term housing. Home at Last will provide on-site services for residents.
The 2018 Homeless Count found approximately 600 persons living without shelter in the area surrounding the Paloma Street warehouse. The building's owner, Michael Kaboud, approached Los Angeles County officials about using the warehouse for a shelter.
On April 17, the City Council also approved a motion introduced earlier this year by Huizar which calls for a City-owned parking lot at 5th and San Pedro Streets to be either leased or sold to the Downtown Women's Center for the development of permanent supportive housing.
“Over the last 40 years the Downtown Women's Center has ended homelessness for hundreds of women by providing permanent housing combined with supportive services,” said DWC’s interim CEO Lisa Watson in a statement. “We look forward to taking this first step with the City to develop additional permanent supportive housing to address the 35% increase of women experiencing homelessness in the Skid Row community.”DWC already operates supportive housing and services out of an adjacent building at 442 South San Pedro. The organization has a covenant agreement with the Los Angeles Housing and Community Investment Department for use of the 5th and San Pedro site as a parking lot.