Denver Supports Homelessness Safe Parking Program
Published on August 11, 2022
Denver Supports Safe Parking Program for Persons Experiencing Homelessness
American Rescue Plan Act funding to expand Safe Parking sites in Denver
Denver’s Department of Housing Stability (HOST) announces the recent awarding of a $150,000 contract to the Colorado Safe Parking Initiative (CSPI) to administer a Safe Parking program for persons experiencing homelessness in their personal vehicles. A contract was executed Sunday, Aug. 7, following an open procurement process.
The contract utilizes American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to support a minimum of two safe parking sites with eight parking spaces at each location. CSPI partners with faith communities and others to provide 12 safe parking sites throughout the Front Range, including a site in southeast Denver, which will be funded under this HOST contract. The second Denver location has yet to be determined by CSPI.
“While unsheltered homelessness has risen in Denver, so is our dedication to providing shelter alternatives to assist individuals with achieving greater stability that ultimately leads toward housing,” said HOST Executive Director Britta Fisher. “This is a modest step in the evolution of Denver’s support system for our unhoused neighbors. We hope to see greater capacity among community partners to grow this model in the future.”
CSPI’s existing sites largely serve working households that are newly homeless. Safe parking provides connection to services and safe, legal overnight parking with restroom access (portable toilets, handwashing stations) and drinking water. Guests are offered individualized case management and supportive services, including housing search and placement, employment development and placement, benefits acquisition, and referrals to health, substance misuse, and mental health care.
The HOST contract will serve an estimated 60 households through May 31, 2023. At least one of the sites will serve recreational vehicles, if possible.
Denver’s plan for recovery includes direct distribution of $308 million in ARPA Local Relief Funds. Denver offers a dashboard to show precisely how ARPA funds are being deployed to support the mayor’s priority of Rebuilding for an Inclusive and Sustainable Economy (RISE) and a Recovery Index to demonstrate how our neighborhoods are recovering.