AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – The City of Aurora wants to house people in their city experiencing homelessness, but they want community input to figure out how to do it. While the simplest solution seems to be building a shelter, that isn’t an option right now.
“Building a new brick and mortar takes time. It’s expensive, so we’re looking for alternative options,” said the Director of Housing and Community Services for The City of Aurora Jessica Prosser.
Partly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a myriad of other factors, Aurora is experiencing a severe homeless problem. Figuring out how to house these people, without building a new building is a challenge.
One option are temporary structures on display now at Restoration Christian Fellowship.
“These are low barrier shelter options. including safe parking, tents, shelters that are dynamic and moveable,” said Prosser.READ MORE: Debate Over Homeless Camping Ban Heating Up In Aurora
The idea is finding to a place within the city where these kind of structures can be set up and the house-less can have a safe place to live with access to services and running water. The city has set up an open house so residents can see what it might look like and give their input.
“Where this might work. This is a kind of setup it would be. Maybe a half acre of land with fencing and screening and they will also be able to weigh in on the option that they like best,” Prosser said.
This input will be valuable for the city to determine how best to serve people experiencing homelessness while at the same time preserving the lifestyle Aurora residents are used to. That way all the city’s residents can live happily and healthy.
“It becomes a public health and safety concern when folks are living rough, sleeping rough, living on the streets,” said Prosser.
If you want to give input, the open house will be open for a week at 15660 E. Sixth Ave., Aurora, CO 80011. If you can’t make it out there you can also participate virtually by visiting EngageAurora.org/Homelessness.