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Chico finds solution to shelter homeless

With a court mandated deadline looming, the city of Chico has filed an official plan to shelter the homeless near the Chico Municipal Airport.

Posted: Jun 23, 2021 1:37 AM
Updated: Jun 23, 2021 9:02 AM

CHICO, Calif. - The city is hoping to shelter 571 homeless at the airport as part of their attempt to settle a lawsuit.

It will be located just west of the airport away from the runway.

So far, the site will have an RV and car area, a large tent, two 275-gallon water tanks, portable restrooms and more.

Action News Now spoke with Jennifer Macarthy, Chico’s Deputy Administrative Officer, and asked her out of all places, why the airport?

“When the city was looking at potential sites, one of the areas that needed to be considered is the capacity of the site,” she explained. “The site on the west side of the airport, we will be able to carry approximately 571 homeless individuals at the site. So, we do have a large capacity there and it’s easily accessible and owned by the city and we will have it up and ready in a quick and orderly fashion.”

RELATED: Over 500 homeless could be sheltered near Chico airport

Macarthy continued to say that this location will have a security service to monitor the site.

Public works said people may bring tents, pets and any personal belongings as long as those things can be kept in their allocated space.

While it may be far away from the city itself, there is already a plan in place to help with transportation.

“We are very fortunate that we are going to be able to have bus transportation to the site," Macarthy said. "We should have four times during the day where there is bus service to and from the site and from the municipal center downtown.”

This all happens almost immediately as yhe site is scheduled to open Friday at 8 a.m.

The case will be presented at the U.S. Eastern District Court to determine if this site meets the judge's approval on July 2.

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