San Diego Homeless Get New Storage Facility Location
Friday, February 28, 2014
A facility providing a little relief to the homeless downtown has gotten a new life. A transitional storage facility where homeless people can keep their belongings has found a new location.
The storage center was on the brink of closing until the Housing Commission provided a new location — a parking lot at 16th and Commerical near the East Village. Interim Mayor Todd Gloria made the announcement on Thursday. The center was operating in a different lot Downtown, but the owner, St. Vincent de Paul, now needs the property for other uses.
Danny McCray is one of two employees at the storage center, and said he understands how important it is for homeless people to have a place to keep their belongings.
“I’ve been there myself before, me and my wife, we’ve been on the streets and when it’s raining really bad, and when you’re trying to carry your personal items,” McCray said.
About 300 brown bins at the facility keep an estimated 30,000 pounds of personal items off the streets. The nonprofit Girls Think Tank runs the center.
Heather Pollack works for Girls Think Tank and said they’ll be able to add 200 more bins at the new location.
“It’s not the bins that matter. That’s 500 people now that we can help, and we have a really good turnover rate, which reflects that people are able to use those to go out, find jobs, find housing,” Pollock said.
The storage facility will be moved to it’s new site on May 1, with a two-year lease and a chance to extend it an additional three years.
The center also plans to add a couple more employees when they relocate. McCray said to him and the current other employee, it is clear how the facility helps people.
“You’d be surprised at the people that come back and say ‘Danny, I got me a job.’ ‘Danny, I got a place, I’m back with my wife.’ I hear that all the time,” McCray said.