Housing advocates in Yuba City are determined to move forward with a bold plan to find homes for hundreds of people currently living along the banks of the Feather River.
The plan starts with the demolition of an abandoned county building and the construction of a brand new three-story apartment complex for the homeless.
The building will have 44-units that include studio, 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom apartments.
“Anything to get these folks back on their feet and get them the help that they need,” Regional Housing Authority Executive Director Gustavo Becerra said.
Officials believe about 300 homeless people live on the banks of the Feather River and as many as 1,100 homeless people live in the Sutter and Yuba County region.
The push for permanent, affordable housing will also include drug, alcohol and job counseling for people who are currently homeless.
Many residents living near the proposed site at the intersection of Garden Highway and Miles Avenue said they support the concept of building housing for the homeless.
“I think it's a good idea,” Yuba City resident Jolene Clark said. “The homeless need it. It's hard to live out there in this environment, right now. It's hot and it's hard to get a job right now."
“I think that would be a good idea," resident Marlene Ortiz said. "That way we can keep people away from the rivers. It would be safer for everyone.”
Others said they favor the idea, but worry about the sheer number of homeless people who might become their neighbors.