These Tuff Shed ‘cabins’ soon will house nearly 50 young people experiencing homelessness in Sacramento

Demonstrating its commitment to employing new and innovative strategies to help solve homelessness, the Sacramento City Council on Tuesday approved plans for a new sleeping-cabin community in North Sacramento set to open in March.

Called the Emergency Bridge Housing at Grove Avenue, the two dozen sleeping cabins will be managed by the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency and will serve young people from 18 to 24 years old.

“This project is the result of a lot of hard work,” said Council member Allen Warren, whose district is home to the new community — a “major” step in decreasing the number of people experiencing homelessness in Sacramento “in a responsible way,” he said.

Each cabin at the site, adjacent to the St. Paul Church of God in Christ at 2771 Grove Ave., will house two people. Additional portable structures will provide space for restrooms, offices, meal preparation, laundry and showers.

The Emergency Bridge Housing at Grove Avenue is set to run for approximately two years and will offer health and rehousing services as well as job training to help young people stabilize their lives and transition into more permanent housing.

SHRA officials said they decided to focus on “transitional age youth” in part because if these young people can stabilize their lives now, they are far less likely to become chronically homeless in the future.

Sacramento non-profit First Step Communities has been selected as the site operator; First Step currently oversees an 80-bed shelter on North A Street in the River District.

The new cabin community will serve approximately 100 people per year, officials said, with clients moving into more permanent housing every six months or so. The area has space for additional cabins should more funding become available.

The sleeping cabins will be purchased from Denver-based Tuff Shed, which supplied similar structures to the City of Oakland. The $5.6 million capital and operation costs for the two year program largely will come from state homelessness funding, officials said.

In addition to the Emergency Bridge Housing at Grove Avenue, the City of Sacramento and SHRA partnered to operate the low-barrier homeless shelter at Capitol Park Hotel. The City and SHRA also are working to open two new 100-bed homeless shelters — one on Meadowview Road and the other Alhambra Boulevard near Broadway — in late spring.

The Emergency Bridge Housing at Grove Avenue serves as the City’s response to the 100-day challenge that Gov. Gavin Newsom issued in December as a way to jump start action on the state’s crisis of homelessness. Cities that meet the governor’s challenge can receive additional state funding to address homelessness.