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City of Bend plans for several shelters, houseless services; Division Street site may open early

(Update: adding video, comments from NeighborImpact)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- When the next winter storm rolls in, there may be a new emergency shelter for the houseless in Bend.

Dana Richards, the unhoused services manager with NeighborImpact, said that is the goal for the Division Street shelter. 

“We have the rooms. As long as it is city-approved we would move folks into it, for sure,” Richards said. 

This week, the Bend City Council was briefed on several updates for shelters in Bend, including the Project Turnkey Division Street shelter, the former Value Inn motel.

While an official opening won't happen until later this year, the city is hoping to use it now as an emergency shelter.

“We have folks that need shelter, and we just want to do as much as we can to get inside,” Richards said. 

Richards is hoping to get budget approval at the January 19th city council meeting.

But that’s not the only shelter being planned.

In March, a ten-unit village being created by St. Vincent De Paul should be completed.

Some time in the spring, 10 sites for a “senior women's shelter” and six sites for “tiny home units” should launch, although locations have not been decided.

This summer, renovation at the Division Street shelter should begin.

The city's plan also said the Second Street shelter, which is operated by Shepherd's House Ministries and has 90 beds, is hoping to operate a navigation center, which would provide daytime services for the houseless community.

There’s plans for another shelter that could hold between 40 and 60 rooms. The location has been selected, but hasn’t been released yet publicly, and it's still in the proposal phase.

Richards thinks any effort to get people off the streets is a good one.

“We have so many folks that are unhoused and not in shelter, and if we have the ability to get folks inside and to help create stability and help folks work towards getting this permanent housing, then why don’t we do it?” Richards said. 

Read more about the city's efforts here.

Article Topic Follows: Government-politics
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Noah Chast

Noah Chast is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Noah here.


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