Proposed village would house homeless and get them back on their feet | KOB 4
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Proposed village would house homeless and get them back on their feet

Kassi Nelson
January 21, 2019 07:11 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Business owners in downtown Albuquerque are making progress on an effort to help the homeless people nearby. An idea to build a campus to house 170 homeless people south of downtown on 2nd Street is taking shape. Business owners said it can’t come soon enough. 

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“I’ve come to work twice and had to clean blood off the front of my office,” Jason Marks said. 

Marks is an attorney who works out of his office on 3rd and Granite St. His neighbors agree enough is enough. 

“I think the bigger problem is we’ve got a segment of our community and they have no place to go and on the street is not the place,” he said.

They plan to give them a place. He and dozens of other business owners in the area are part of the Greater Albuquerque Business Alliance. The nonprofit is moving forward on an idea they’re calling “Gabriel’s Village.” 

“The good news is that Albuquerque’s going to step up to the plate and we’re going to help those that need help,” Greater Albuquerque Business Alliance President Connie Vigil said. 

The campus isn’t just houses. It includes a community garden, classrooms, recreation center, and daycare center to help people get back on their feet. Vigil said those who stay in the village must be sober. 

“Families and women with children, people that don’t have addictions that need help that may have been forgotten a little bit that’s what we’re focusing on as well as veterans,” she said. 

Vigil and others are currently writing up a Request for Proposal for $8 million of city and county money for the project. Vigil said they plan to put a down payment on the land next month. While there are still many hurdles before the construction can begin, Vigil said if things keep going how they are we could see most of the campus built by January 2020. 

Marks said he’ll be glad to see his neighbors get help. 

“Businesses need it,” he said. “Even more the people out there on the streets need it.”

Credits

Kassi Nelson

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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