The homeless issue is a worry for cities like New York City, Los Angeles, and Seattle. Those who fall in this category do not have a permanent address. That makes it difficult for the administration to keep track of their whereabouts. The City Council of Seattle is keen to tackle the situation. It has set the ball rolling by purchasing three buildings for $48 million.

These are located in the fashionable neighborhood of Capitol Hill. They would be ready before Christmas and provide accommodation for about 12,000 homeless people in the city. One part of the funds for this acquisition has come from COVID relief funds.

The City Council and Mayor Jenny Durkan approved the joint proposal in June.

These deals have set the trend, and more acquisitions are on the cards. In the words of Mayor Durkan: “Our homelessness crisis has always been a housing crisis.” She says it is necessary to address this issue on priority, and Seattle could serve as a model for the rest of the country.

Seattle wants affordable housing for the homeless

Mayor Durkan feels the real estate market of Seattle presents opportunities to provide affordable housing. That would be possible by acquiring newly constructed apartment buildings and converting them to suit the needs.

The Mayor emphasized that Seattle will not hesitate to go in for investments to address the homelessness crisis.

She hopes that the approach of Seattle to the homeless crisis could become a national model.

The three buildings would mean 165 apartments. Some of these would be for the younger generation and others for vulnerable adults.

Dealing with the homeless population of Seattle is an issue in the forthcoming race to select a successor to Durkan.

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Her term expires in December, and she is not willing to seek re-election.

Seattle declared an emergency on the homeless crisis long back

According to King 5, the homeless in Seattle are not new. An emergency was declared more than five years ago on this crisis. It seems there are plans to augment the capacity by adding more than 2,000 housing units by the end of 2023.

It is not just the addition of houses but includes associated infrastructure.

One of these relates to encampments in parks and public spaces where it is important to control litter and damages. Then there are areas like pest control, fencing, tree replacement, graffiti removal, and repairs to play areas.

In the present pandemic scenario, cleanliness is a factor that cannot be compromised. The administration would have to keep a tab on the people and ensure safety for all in Seattle.