Ground broke this spring on a homeless village in North Portland, a controversial idea aimed at providing homes to those who might otherwise live on the streets.
The concept, which is gaining traction in Oregon, got a boost last year from Meyer's Affordable Housing Initiative:
"I think there's a widespread sense that if we keep doing what we've been doing, we're never going to meet more than a sliver of need," said (Michael) Parkhurst, program officer for the Meyer Memorial Trust, who helps lead the trust's $15 million, five-year Affordable Housing Initiative.
Last year, the Meyer trust gave Eugene's Square One Villages $148,200 to support an unconventional housing alternative: a homeless village. Emerald Village, which broke ground in May, is a permanent, cooperatively owned settlement. Each of its 22 tiny houses, ranging from 160 to 280 square feet of living space, will have its own kitchenette and bathroom and will rent for $250 to $350 per month. Construction on the village began in May.
"If you'd have asked me a few years ago, would Meyer Memorial Trust be putting money into that, I'd have been skeptical," Parkhurst says.
Check out the Portland Tribune's full story, by Thacher Schmid, here.