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Tiny house village planned near downtown

CITY HALL (AP) — St. Louis is planning a village of tiny homes to provide shelter for the homeless, and the funding is coming from a federal program for COVID-19 relief.

Mayor Lyda Krewson announced on Tuesday plans for 50 tiny homes at 900 N. Jefferson Avenue, near downtown. The property was previously the site of an RV park.

Krewson plans to use $600,000 of the city’s $32 million in federal CARES Act money to build the homes and lease the land. The Board of Estimate and Apportionment must grant final approval.

“This forward-thinking, innovative, and efficient approach to housing has been done in some other cities, but never in St. Louis,” Krewson said in a news release. She said the plan “expands our current capacity to help more people and builds on our longstanding commitment to connecting those in need to more stable housing environments.”

Each house will have a bed, desk, chair, heating and air conditioning and WiFi.

“We also expect to contract with a local provider for case management, supervision, meals, showers, and 24/7 security,” Krewson said.

Plans call for 40 single homes, eight double homes and two compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The homes are expected to go up quickly — the city anticipates the first residents will move in by Dec. 1.

A second tiny house village is planned in north St. Louis, also with about 50 homes. That village, announced last month, will focus on houses for homeless veterans and is funded in part by the Veterans Community Project based in Kansas City.

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