Highland Park tiny homes open to public Friday

Highland Park tiny homes ribbon cutting
L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti along with L.A. city officials at the Highland Park tiny homes ribbon cutting ceremony on Oct. 21, 2021. Photo credit City of Los Angeles - Council District 14

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The new Tiny Home Village in Highland Park, which is the largest of its kind in the U.S. offering interim shelter for people experiencing homelessness, will be open to the public Friday to walk around and enjoy music and food trucks.

Councilman Kevin de Leon slept overnight at the village on Friday and celebrated the grand opening on Thursday ahead of residents' expected move-in date Nov. 2.

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"The Arroyo Seco Tiny Home Village is all about restoring hope to people whose lives have been shattered into 1 million pieces by homelessness," he said.

"This is a crisis of despair and hopelessness affecting us all. But that's changing and today marks another step toward reversing the pain and suffering to those on our streets who are experiencing it."

The 6.8-acre site within Arroyo Seco Park was completed in 90 days, and is the largest tiny home village in the United States, providing 117 housing units and 224 non-congregate beds as transitional residences for people experiencing homelessness in the Highland Park community.

People can visit the site, at 5950 Arroyo Dr., from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday evening.

Each tiny home cost about $55,000, making it the least expensive source of homeless housing available in Los Angeles County, officials said. Every home in the village has been hand-painted by renowned YouTube artist Zach Hsieh, alongside a crew of other artists he recruited to beautify the village.

"Solving homelessness demands creative and lasting solutions that meet the immediate and critical need for housing today, while giving our unhoused neighbors a path to a permanent place to call home tomorrow," said Mayor Eric Garcetti, who attended the village's opening on Thursday morning.

"The only way to end this crisis is with more long-term and quality housing options -- and as the largest tiny homes village in the country, the Arroyo Seco Village is the latest milestone in our commitment to deliver healing and hope to our most vulnerable neighbors."

The village, operated by Hope of The Valley Rescue Mission, was funded and built by the city of Los Angeles.

"This is a part of Councilman De León's commitment to do his part in developing 25,000 new homeless housing units by 2025," the 14th District Office wrote in a statement issued Tuesday.

De León -- who is running for mayor to replace the termed-out Garcetti -- slept at the tiny homes, he said, to prove that housing can be made comfortably and economically for the unhoused community.

Residents are expected to move into the village on Nov. 2.

The Arroyo Seco site is the seventh village to open in the city and the sixth to be operated by Hope of The Valley

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