America, the wealthiest country in the world, has an ever-expanding homeless crisis in urban centers across the nation, especially in the state of California, particularly in and around the Golden State’s major cities, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Media reports would indicate that ever-growing homelessness has now become a serious humanitarian problem with local officials at a loss to help solve or lessen the devastating effect on society at large. 

Most agree there is a myriad of root causes of homelessness, including mental health issues, alcohol/drug addiction, personal choice to live on the streets and the high cost of living in California with the highest taxes, excessive regulations and least affordable housing in the nation.

While the big cities garner most of the attention, some would say inattention, there are smaller metropolitan areas that are addressing the affordable housing issue by utilizing – the only truly safe quality affordable housing available to reduce existing and future homelessness –  today’s modern manufactured homes.

Most recently, several cities including San Jose, California, and Springfield, Missouri have discovered smaller HUD Code (over 400 square feet) manufactured homes are an inexpensive (one-half the cost of a comparable site-built) transition from the street to dignity and a place to call home.

Woodland, California, with a population of approximately 56,000, located about 15 miles northwest of Sacramento has planned a complex to address their burgeoning homeless problem utilizing small manufactured homes, according to excerpts from a report by KCRA 3 Sacramento.



With the homeless population nearly doubling from 131 to 238 people in just two years, the small city of Woodland is looking to tackle a big problem spreading all across California. The city has introduced a plan that hopes to create housing for people living on the streets.

Woodland is planning a homeless village with “tiny” manufactured homes built on a permanent foundation.

“In a couple of years, we’re going to have completed 61 housing units, Woodland City Manager Paul Navarro said. “And, they’re actually being intentionally designed to have more of a neighborhood feel.

The 5.5-acre campus will include 100 beds for the emergency shelter and a 60-bed treatment facility along with the manufactured homes. The complex will provide wraparound services, including mental health, drug, and alcohol counseling for people who come to the complex.

“The housing project, No Place Like Home, is about $10.2 million just for the housing units,” Navarro said. “We have received a funding commitment from the state for roughly half of that. We’re working on piecing together the remainder of that funding.

Will people on the street go to the facility?  “Yes,” said Lori Lichman, who has been homeless in Woodland for about a year. I think it’s good that they are trying to build something for us. Because even if it is far away, I think it is a good thing to do,”

“Yes, I would live there,” said a man who called himself Q. “That would be a better place than what’s out here. That would definitely be a better place.”

For some, living in a home might seem like a foreign concept. For some, the need for housing is urgent.

“Half of us here wouldn’t know what to do in a home,” said  Lisa Marie DeLeon, who was camped outside of the old Yolo County Courthouse. “I had an apartment. I was living out of a box for two months. This became a bad habit. It’s almost like an illness we are going through.”
“I would go anywhere other than here,” said Richar Patino, who was lying on the ground outside the old courthouse. “If hell had a roof right now, I  would be there.”

Image: Karl from Surviving Oakridge

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