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Savannah looking to expand tiny houses as solution to homelessness

Published: Jul. 25, 2021 at 11:06 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 26, 2021 at 12:55 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - City leaders are bringing more tiny houses to the Coastal Empire. City aldermen say these homes could be a solution to homelessness in Savannah.

The new tiny houses are still in the beginning stages. You might have seen tiny houses on Dundee Street built for military veterans. City aldermen say the next round of homes will be built for everyone. They say there are more than 32 homeless camps in Savannah and this is just the start of solving a growing problem.

Alderwoman Linda Wilder Bryan has been leading this effort in her district for more than a year. She credits the Savannah Homeless Authority for providing housing veterans, but says the City realizes they need to reach more of the community.

“Remember when the pandemic started, they were like you’ve got to wash your hands for 25, 20 seconds. I’m like, they don’t even have water to drink,” said Wilder Bryan, who represents Savannah’s Third District.

The City is still looking at the cost-effectiveness of the homes and funding. The manufacturing cost of a tiny house is $7,000. They will be located at the Dundee Village and Assistant City Manager Heath Lloyd says they hope to have 75 to 100 houses at the site.

“So we’re taking a look at a 120-square-foot home. This is a full one-bedroom house right here behind us that is strong enough to get through a Category 5 hurricane, an earthquake,” said Alderman Nick Palumbo, who represents District Four.

They’re also working on putting together a command center with washers, dryers, shower stalls and computers.

“If you put these pieces together, the sanitary camp, the container homes, then we really believe we can have a solution for Savannah one day in the very near future,” said Lloyd.

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