Denver’s first ‘micro-community’ for the homeless to break ground

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(The Center Square) – A new “micro-community” is set to break ground this week in Denver as the city will spend $2 million to help house those experiencing homelessness.

As part of Mayor Mike Johnston’s plan to address homelessness, the city plans to break ground on the new property at 2302 S. Sante Fe Dr. this coming week. It will feature several resources for those living there to help transition into permanent housing, according to a press release.

The facility will be fenced and have staff available 24/7 on site and house 120 individuals in total. It will include restrooms, communal kitchens and laundry facilities. The city said the exact cost for the micro community is still in development.

The city defines a micro-community as small plots of land about a half-acre large that will house homeless people in pallet shelters or tiny homes. The city stated that the pallet shelters would have a private space with a door that locks as well as a bed, a desk and storage space for belongings.

The mayor’s plan to address homelessness was estimated by the city to cost $48.6 million in fiscal year 2023, according to city documents.

“This future micro-community will help get unhoused neighbors off the street and into safe, stable, supportive transitional housing while also helping us close unsafe encampments and keep neighborhoods closed to future camping,” Johnston said in a media release. “The groundbreaking marks important progress in our goal to get 1,000 unhoused Denverites into transitional housing before Dec 31.”

The city plans on spending several millions of dollars to further community efforts to remove those experiencing homelessness off the streets, including purchasing a hotel, additional leases, as well as the operating costs, The Center Square previously reported.

According to the Metro Denver Homeless Initiative there were 5,818 people experiencing homelessness in Denver as of January.

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