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Bridge Housing Communities

Covid-19 emergency housing 

In response to the COVID-19 emergency and the City’s shelter crisis declaration, the City of San José is developing three emergency interim housing communities to help protect unhoused people in the short term, slow the spread of COVID-19, and expand the City's interim housing capacity after this public health emergency recedes.

On April 21, 2020, the City Council approved construction of the first emergency interim housing community on a parcel at the intersection of Monterey Road and Bernal Road. The City Council also directed staff to develop plans for emergency interim housing on Evans Lane near Almaden Expressway, and on Rue Ferrari near Highway 101.

Many aspects of these three emergency interim housing communities will be similar to the City's two existing bridge housing communities -- one of which is operational and the other is under construction.

Here are frequently asked questions about emergency interim housing.

history of bridge housing in SAN jose

The City Council originally approved two BHC sites in December 2018. The parcels are located in Districts 3 and 7. One is owned by VTA and one is owned by Caltrans. The BHCs are intended to provide interim housing for homeless individuals while they search for permanent housing.

Many residents at these first two BHCs participate in the Santa Clara County Rapid Rehousing System. This means they have government subsidies, such as housing vouchers, to help them afford permanent housing. These BHC residents also have case managers to connect them with supportive services and assist them in addressing challenges so they can successfully transition into permanent housing.

Each BHC features 40 individual sleeping cabins for program residents. In addition to sleeping cabins, each BHC offers community space that includes shower facilities, a common kitchen, laundry facilities, storage, meeting rooms, staff offices, and designated smoking areas.

summary of rules

Each BHC may operate differently based on several factors, including site governance, target population, and site amenities. Site-specific rules will include rules that ensure BHC residents are good neighbors and respectful of surrounding communities.  

While site-specific rules may vary from site to site, all BHCs will include common rules to ensure public safety. Common site rules will focus on respect between all stakeholders and restrictions on any unwanted actions or behaviors that may affect public safety.  

More information about Site Specific Rules & Community Guidelines can be found on page 11 of the Operations & Services Overview Manual.

explanation of security precautions to keep bhc residents and neighborhood safe

Each BHC takes certain precautions to ensure resident and neighborhood safety. Each site is enclosed by a fence to control foot traffic in and out of the site. Anyone entering or leaving the site is required to stop at the BHC office. Loitering near is monitored and addressed. For the first year, both BHC sites will have 24/7 security services. After one year, security precautions will be reevaluated.

In addition to all security measures, BHC operating staff and City staff will engage with community stakeholders to collect input about security and neighborhood concerns. 

learn more

For more information about HomeFirst, the BHC operator, and to find details about making donations or apply to live at a BHC, please click here.

To volunteer to build BHC sleeping cabins with Habitat For Humanity, please click here.

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