Sherman Oaks Housing Initiatives

The Proposed Initiatives:

 

*UPDATE on NOVEMBER 13, 2018*

15314 Dickens St: Council District Four received the enclosed memo from the City Administrative Officer stating that they “do not recommend that the City proceed with further evaluation of the site for use as permanent affordable housing because the City does not own the property and housing is not an allowed use under its lease.”  Please see letter here.  This site is no longer under consideration and no further action will be taken.

5161 Sepulveda Blvd: To date, City staff have not been able to get approval from the Army Reserve which owns the property for a site visit for evaluation. Senator Dianne Feinstein’s office as well as Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office are continuing to work on scheduling a visit.   

Oxnard & Sepulveda Lot:  This parking lot on Oxnard Blvd., just west of Sepulveda, was brought to our office’s attention by the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council’s Vision Committee. My office has referred this location to City departments for review. However, as this parcel is owned by the Army Corps of Engineers, the City will likely face similar challenges in getting access and approval for a federally-owned property.


Homelessness is an issue affecting every neighborhood in Los Angeles, and I'm looking forward to working with you to address homelessness in Sherman Oaks.

I asked the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council and the Sherman Oaks Homeowners Association to provide ideas and suggestions, including locations that might have potential as housing solutions for people experiencing
homelessness. I introduced a motion in City Council, which, if passed, asks the City to study two properties to see if they have any possibilities for housing options: 15314 W. Dickens St. and 5161 Sepulveda Blvd. (Council File # 12-1549-S12). This motion has not yet been scheduled for a hearing.

The Sepulveda site is being considered for emergency temporary housing, as part of Mayor Garcetti’s “A Bridge Home” program. Again, the first step for evaluation is the City Council motion so that City departments can conduct an
initial review, and opportunities for community input will be part of the process as it moves forward.

I have been asking all neighborhood organizations in Council District 4 to look for solutions, including potential locations for housing in their communities. There are two projects already underway in the District: a bridge housing program at the base of the Hollywood Hills, and the LGBT Center in central Hollywood with affordable, supportive, and emergency housing. I am continuing to look for additional opportunities in CD4 – including in Los Feliz and Hancock Park.

All 15 City Councilmembers have committed to finding locations for permanent supportive housing and bridge housing in
their Council Districts, and there are multiple sites under review.

With the overwhelming approval of Measure H and Proposition HHH, we have funding streams to build housing and provide the services necessary to make real progress towards ending homelessness.

I value transparency and community feedback, and I want you to know that we are still very early in the process, no decisions have yet been made other than to begin the process to evaluate the sites for potential opportunities.

I am absolutely open to studying other sites in Sherman Oaks, and I look forward to hearing your thoughts and solutions.

If you have any questions, or would like to be included in periodic updates as this process moves forward, please contact cd4.issues@lacity.org.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are you putting homeless housing in Sherman Oaks?

The whole City of Los Angeles, including Sherman Oaks, is experiencing the crisis of homelessness. To solve homelessness in Sherman Oaks, we need homeless housing and resources in Sherman Oaks. 

Absolutely nothing has been decided yet.  The City is looking to see if these sites are even feasible.  

 

Why does it have to be Sherman Oaks? 

It doesn’t.  But sites in Sherman Oaks would give our local outreach workers and law enforcement officers more resources in taking on homelessness specifically in Sherman Oaks. If we want to get serious about reducing the number of people sleeping on the streets or in their cars in Sherman Oaks, we need to seriously consider the only proven solution – resources to get individuals experiencing homelessness off the street and into housing with the support services they need.

 

I was never notified.  Shouldn’t I get a say what goes in my neighborhood?

Definitely!  This is the very beginning of the public process.  Councilmember Ryu asked the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council and the Sherman Oaks Homeowners Association to come up with suggestions and ideas, including potential locations.  Councilmember Ryu has been asking all neighborhood organizations across Council District 4 for ideas. 

We are certainly open to studying other locations in Sherman Oaks.  All options are on the table, and we’d like to hear your ideas.   

 

But why are you building at these two sites? 

We aren’t building anything yet at these two sites, and possibly never will.  This is what has happened so far: a motion has been submitted that would direct city departments to study the feasibility of two locations.   

These two sites were suggested for study – at Councilmember Ryu’s request – in part because they are government-owned sites and are near public transit, as well for the proximity to people already experiencing homelessness in Sherman Oaks.  We would like to explore whether either these sites have any potential for a housing solutions.  

 

So what exactly are you considering in Sherman Oaks?

There are two locations being considered for their potential to be part of this solution in Sherman Oaks.

5161 Sepulveda Boulevard is being studied for the Mayor’s “A Bridge Home” program - temporary housing being built in every council district across the City.  A Bridge Home is designed to house the homeless in the immediate area and comes with extra resources for encampment cleanups in the neighborhood.

15314 Dickens Street was not deemed feasible by the City Administrative Officer and is no longer under consideration.

Oxnard & Sepulveda Lot is a parking lot on Oxnard Blvd., just west of Sepulveda. It was brought to our office’s attention by the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council’s Vision Committee. My office has referred this location to City departments for review. 

 

Why can’t you put this somewhere else?

We are!  There are two sites elsewhere in Council District 4 already underway:  a bridge housing program at the Gardner library at the base of the Hollywood Hills, and the LGBT Center in central Hollywood, which will have affordable, supportive, and emergency housing.  And we continuing to look for additional locations in all neighborhoods of CD4, including Los Feliz and Hancock Park, but in order to solve homelessness in Sherman Oaks, we need resources in Sherman Oaks.  

All 15 City Councilmembers have committed to building permanent supportive housing and bridge housing in their districts and there are multiple locations throughout Los Angeles being reviewed and in process.

 

We already have a lot of homeless in Sherman Oaks already. This will bring more.

No.  Actually these housing options are designed to reduce homelessness.  They are intended to specifically serve the people already experiencing homelessness in proximity to the site.

These sites operate 24/7, with staff onsite at all times.  Residents are not kicked out during the day, and there are no-walkup services. If the sites are built, homeless outreach teams would connect with people experiencing homelessness in the surrounding the area to bring them to the housing and resources they need to put their life on track.

Additionally, with the A Bridge Home program, the City is dedicating extra resources to cleanup once these sites are open to ensure that the streets surrounding the bridge housing sites remain safe and clean.

 

Who are you bringing into the neighborhood? Will this attract criminals?

Neither of these housing solutions would attract criminal elements to the neighborhood and are intended to make the community safer by bringing people experiencing homelessness in Sherman Oaks into housing. These solutions would provide people experiencing homelessness with a safer place to live and connect them to counseling, job training and other resources needed. 

 

Who will live in this housing? How big will they be?

These housing options are intended to serve the people experiencing homelessness near these locations.  If the sites are built, homeless outreach teams would identify and connect with individuals currently experiencing homelessness nearby for placement.

Before we know more details of the site or who will operate them, the City needs to study if these sites are even feasible for housing.

 

Just giving people free housing isn’t going to solve anything. We need more job training and rehab programs and mental health services for homeless people!  

Yes and yes and yes.  You are right, and that’s why bridge housing and supportive housing programs have case managers and other support staff on site to ensure that the residents can get the resources they need to get their lives back on track. 

 

When would these two sites be built?

We don’t know if or when housing may be built at these locations. This is the very beginning of the process.  A Bridge Home temporary emergency housing has been taking a number of months, up to a year.  Supportive and affordable housing can take years to build.

 

So where do we go from here?

Again, we are the very beginning of this process – nothing has been decided and nothing is being built. There will be many additional steps and opportunities for public input as the process continues. You can email your ideas and questions to cd4.issues@lacity.org.