Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti kicked off his $20-million campaign to open new shelters across the city by announcing tentative plans Wednesday for a temporary homeless facility on a city-owned parking lot in the heart of Koreatown.
No details were available. The cost estimate, type of structure and capacity are awaiting engineering reports, although the mayor said he hoped the site could hold at least 65 beds.
The announcement functioned more as a pep rally for the mayor’s drive to open potentially both tent and trailer shelters than as an official launch. It featured City Council President Herb Wesson and dozens of Korean American, Bangladeshi and African American community members, as well as other church and business leaders and residents touting the shelter plan.
The initiative is a sharp departure from the administration’s focus on housing construction, as well as an acknowledgment of the city’s failure to stanch the spread of squalid encampments and the flow of new residents into homelessness.
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The homelessness crisis demands that we act boldly to get people off the streets as quickly as possible.
— Mayor Eric Garcetti (@MayorOfLA) May 2, 2018