Long Beach, News

Long Beach City Council approves development for homeless shelter

Long Beach City Council passed a motion Tuesday that allows the city manager to purchase a property that will be repurposed as a new, year-round homeless shelter in North Long Beach.

City staff has identified the property as the site for the development of a state-of-the-art, village-style campus for homeless services and support.

The council’s vote marks the first step in its commitment to address the severe homelessness issue in Long Beach, which is reported with an average increase of 4,000 people a year.

In a previous city council meeting, Kelly Colopy, the Long Beach Director of Health and Human Services, presented the Everyone Home Task Force, designed to build on the city’s homeless services, affordable housing efforts, new pathways into housing and homelessness prevention methods for residents.

Colopy and the EHLB determined the need for approximately 500 shelter beds across the city of Long Beach.

“With this shelter, we would be looking to have 125 beds, which would create a lot of progress for us,” Colopy said. “This would be the first municipally owned year-round shelter in Long Beach for a very long time.”

Colopy added that the shelter will become an outreach center for residents and families in need.

“We will provide jobs, employment training and all the social services needed to be able to connect people to supports to help them become successful,” Colopy said.

Mayor Robert Garcia stated that homelessness is the number one human issue that the city of Long Beach faces.

The  shelter has been in development since July 2018. The council requested a report on revenue options to address local homelessness and housing shortages in Long Beach.

The purchase of the property located at 6841-6845 Atlantic Avenue will not exceed $9.5 million.

The next city council meeting will be Feb. 12 at Long Beach City Hall.

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