Successful program provides safe, lawful 24-hour vehicle camping for individuals and families
SAN DIEGO – Working to create new options for individuals and families experiencing homelessness, the Wednesday, March 15 recommendation by the City Council’s Rules Committee moved forward a plan to open a new safe parking lot in the Clairemont neighborhood that will include live-in-ready camper trailers as well as free, safe parking for people who sleep overnight in their vehicles.
“Safe Parking is a tool that can keep people from losing their home of last resort and winding up on our streets.” said Mayor Todd Gloria. “This program expansion will put to good use the trailers provided to us by the State and give folks more space to live while they work to find permanent housing.”
The City Council’s Rules Committee voted unanimously on a proposal by the city’s Homelessness Strategies and Solutions Department to amend a contract with Jewish Family Service of San Diego to operate the new lot
Located near the city’s Rose Canyon Operations Yard, the lot will operate 24 hours a day and provide a safe place for unhoused residents needing to sleep overnight in their vehicles, with access to critical services to secure employment, financial stability and more on their path to long-term housing.
In addition to providing 15 spaces for parking, the site includes 12 camper trailers for Safe Parking participants to live in as they work to end their homelessness. The trailers come equipped with beds, showers and bathrooms. The trailers were provided to cities by the State of California as part of its emergency response to the homelessness crisis.
The new Safe Parking lot will be operated by Jewish Family Service of San Diego, which runs three other Safe Parking lots under contract with the city. Combined, the four lots provide space for up to 233 households sleeping overnight in standard vehicles and RVs and now 12 camper trailers. The new lot is anticipated to cost $474,000 through the end of June and approximately $975,000 annually.
The opening of the Rose Canyon site is part of Mayor Gloria’s comprehensive strategy to address homelessness. Last year, the city expanded the Safe Parking Program to 24-hour operation at one of the three existing lots for the first time and opened new shelters for women, seniors and those with chronic behavioral health issues. The Mayor also recently announced plans to open a shelter for families at a former motel in Barrio Logan.
With Wednesday’s recommendation by the Rules Committee, the plan is expected to be considered by the full City Council next week. To learn more about the Safe Parking Program, visit the Homelessness Strategies and Solutions webpage at https://www.sandiego.gov/homelessness-strategies-and-solutions/services/safe-parking-program.
(City of San Diego Release) n