Could tiny homes be the solution to ending homelessness in Springfield?

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A novel solution to a complex problem is coming to the city. 

Tiny Homes are ready to shelter the less fortunate. The Tiny Homes Initiative held an informational dialogue Thursday night about the prospects of bringing affordable housing to Springfield.  

The movement began when a property manager saw countless homeless people as she walked to and from work every day. Christy Torres came up with a solution and started the initiative. 

“Knowing that there is a real need to have affordable housing or houses that are affordable, I have to figure out how to best reach people that need affordable housing or houses that are affordable,” Torres said. 

Torres quickly found others trying to solve the same problem, including experts in minimum standards for human occupancy like Charles Knight. 

“Considering in this country we have six abandoned homes for every homeless person, so we can perhaps do small houses where we can’t do big ones so people can have living quarters,” said Knight. 

The initiative’s first planned tiny home association will be focused on housing some of the 600 homeless veterans in Springfield. The homes would cost an estimate of $50 – $100 per square foot and come with financial training classes, as well as homeownership classes.  

The group is still searching for a viable site for the community and working on exceptions and changes to city zoning codes. 

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