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More transitional housing opening in Rochester

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- Two new transitional housing facilities are set to open in Rochester on July 1st, providing stable housing for people experiencing homelessness.

While the opening of these facilities doesn't solve the entire problem, it will give 27 people who where previously unsheltered or staying at the Civic Center warming center, a place to call home.

"You can't shelter in place, if you don't have a place to call home," said Olmsted County Housing Director Dave Dunn. "And so this place gives them that place to call home, that place to be safe, and that place to recover."

"Since COVID-19 pandemic started they've had the availability of being able to get a bed at the Mayo Civic Center, Rochester community warming center moved to that location afer COVID-19 started, opening up with I believe 40 beds," said Dan Fifield, Founder of The Landing MN.

The Olmsted County Housing and Redevelopment Authority has been working with Catholic Charities to open the two new transitional housing facilities in town.

"So our overnight operations that were at the Civic Center are actually going to transition into three different locations," said Dunn. "So the building we are in today is one of them, it has 18 units of housing. There's a 12 unit building on the south side of Rochester and then we are also going to open the warming center location on 4th Street. So it's really kind of moving our response from phase one to phase two. Really going from that emergency response to more of that transitional response that we're looking at for the next six to eight months."

The facilities include common spaces like kitchen an dining areas, along with individual rooms with bathrooms for residents.

While this is a step in the right direction, there is still more work to be done. Fifield says that in the last 60 days The Landing MN has provided services for 159 people.

"The work the county has done in the last three months has been phenomenal, they have been able to get a good number of people housed into either permanent or temporary housing," said Fifield. "The problem is that our numbers are still quite large. The warming center, for the month of June, for the information that I have been given, has seen 108 people."

Sarah Gannon

Sarah Gannon

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