Another Parking Lot For Homeless Living Out Of Cars Opens In San Diego
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Credit: Matt Hoffman/KPBS
The lot near the corner of Aero Drive and Murphy Canyon Road is owned by the City of San Diego and operated by Dreams for Change and Jewish Family Service.
Dreams for Change said this new lot means the nonprofit will be able to provide parking for 200 people in San Diego County.
This space owned by the City of San Diego used to be the old American Medical Response (AMR) ambulance storage lot. Even though it is owned by the city, Dreams for Change and Jewish Family Service will run daily operations.
The facility is gated and has hand-washing stations and bathrooms available. People sleeping here can start arriving at 6 p.m. and must leave the next morning by 7 a.m.
Dreams for Change does not have many requirements for people to stay, only that you cannot have a record of violent crime and must be trying to better your living situation.
The program is not first come first serve; the nonprofit has a growing waiting list for spaces. The City of San Diego will provide funding to keep the lot open for the next six months.
"They identified this piece of property as a place where we could actually host this lot program," said Dreams for Change CEO Teresa Smith. "This lot is set to have 60 vehicles, we have 60 at another site, and 30 at another site. So we have a total of 150 spots now in San Diego."
After six months, Dreams for Change and the City of San Diego will get together and reevaluate the contract. Smith said they will look at potentially changing parts of the overnight parking program, and then will try and sign an 18-month extension to keep the lot open.
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