Citing a need to preserve low-cost affordable housing, Boise City Councilors discussed the purchase of a trailer park in the Vista neighborhood at Shoshone and Malad at a recent work session.
Council President Elaine Clegg said, “This is a great opportunity to secure a revenue source for taxpayers and preserve shelter for our unhoused community members.” She noted the city is in the real estate rental business at the airport, Gateway industrial park, and the Franklin-Orchard housing development. The trailer business would just be an extension of the city’s marketing scheme.
Mayor Lauren McLean was a supporter of the idea noting she would gladly make a “business recruiting trip” in an attempt to attract house trailer manufacturers to relocate in Boise. She declined to name potential businesses or a destination for any trip. At one time there were several manufacturers along Federal Way providing jobs for Boiseans.
Golden Dawn trailer park off Warm Springs is nearly surrounded by Harris Ranch upscale housing and Councilor Lisa Sanchez suggested the city purchase the property so, “People who look like me” can have cheap housing in the east Boise area.
Newest councilor Luci Willits liked the idea of more affordable housing and noted the house trailers are similar in shape to the so-called “skinny housing” found throughout the city. Willits noted with the modular design and shape, the house trailers would fit nicely on the median strip already owned by the city along Harrison Blvd.
She jokingly called her plan a “median priced” housing fix, adding, “No reason to limit affordable housing to the Bench area. We should provide affordable shelter in the North End as well.”
Councilor Jimmy Hallyburton jumped on the idea saying he would gladly give each new resident on Harrison a bicycle to show his support of unhoused citizens moving into the median priced homes.
Always the voice of caution, Councilor Patrick Bagaent told his colleagues, “Check the date here and then think!”
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