GRANTS PASS, Ore. -- The housing crisis is an ongoing issue facing the nation, and southern Oregon is no different.
Originally proposed as a temporary measure to address houselessness, Rogue Retreat's urban campground in Medford has become a long-term fixture since opening up in Medford more than a year ago. It's also been successful enough that nearby cities are in the process of creating their own.
“The City of Grants Pass is actually working with the AllCare Community Foundation to purchase land to set up an urban campground,” said Matt Vorderstrasse, development director for Rogue Retreat.
Vorderstrasse has seen the Medford campground climb to new heights, and now the Grant Pass City Council and the AllCare Community Foundation want to join forces to bring a similar campground to the City of Grants pass.
“At this point AllCare Community Foundation would be able to leverage and purchase land and do the set up and Rogue Retreat would step in to manage the property,” Vorderstrasse said.
Right now, AllCare Community Foundation doesn't have a set location for the campground, but they do have some properties in mind.
“This is one opportunity to both have a physical facility and case management — and that's the reason we're partnering with Rogue Retreat, and it’s absolutely critical to this to this program, because just a facility on its own will not will not resolve the issues,” said Jed Keller, who is on the Board of Directors for the AllCare Community Foundation.
Keller added that the cost of the campground will be anywhere from one to one and a half million.
“The challenges associate with homelessness are not going to magically disappear, so I think that the majority of the city council would probably agree that a well-managed urban campground could be a good first step into managing the problem,” said Grants Pass city council member Rob Pell.
The next City Council meeting to discuss the matter will be on October 20th.