Bubble shelter for homeless fits prison mold? FWD

Tom Boland (wgcp@earthlink.net)
Sun, 11 Apr 1999 08:28:47 -0700 (PDT)

I invite your comments on the idea of the "tennis-bubble-style shelter"
cited below, and on the similarities and differences between jails,
shelters and other institutional settings where people live.

If we're going "beyond shelter", where would that be?

What I  have in mind is a welcome, safe, dry abode for six billion.  Any ideas?

Homes for all! -- Tom Boland, HPN listowner <wgcp@earthlink.net>

PS: Feel free to forward my query to other lists, sites and interested persons.

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FWD  Toronto Star - April 7, 1999
     Greater Toronto Story:


     By  Mike Funston - Toronto Star  Peel/Halton Bureau

 A temporary tennis-bubble-style shelter will likely be used in Mississauga
next winter to house up to 60 homeless men at a time, Peel officials say.

 This past winter Peel planned to establish two shelters, one each in
Mississauga and Brampton with help from provincial funding.

 But only one suitable building could be found - in a former Brampton works
yard on Rutherford Rd. - and renovated by December.

 ``Next winter we want to have one in Mississauga, too,'' Peel's chief
administrative officer, Roger Maloney, said in an interview.

 The likely site for the shelter will be at a works yard on Wolfedale Rd.,
south of Burnhamthorpe Rd., near the centre of the city, but a final
decision hasn't been made, Maloney said.

 The type of structure being considered looks like a golf or tennis bubble,
but is not inflated with air, Peel housing commissioner Keith Ward said.

 ``It would be a rigid structure, with a thick, insulated membrane, erected
on a concrete pad that would be built for that purpose.

 ``These have been used for all kinds of things, from industrial storage to
barracks-style living quarters in some U.S. jails.''

 The homeless shelter would also have washrooms and showers, a kitchen,
dining area and counselling room, Ward said.

 It would cost about $350,000, substantially less than building a permanent
shelter or renovating an existing one, he said.

 This past winter's shelter program has shown officials that the
homelessness problem in Peel is worse than was thought, Ward said.

 The Brampton shelter for men was filled to its 40-bed capacity almost
every night. Families were served by a Salvation Army shelter, which took
in about 100 people a night in 35 units, Ward said.

 ``They (the Salvation Army) were often at capacity and were turning people
away. So the region had to put up about 20 families a night in a local
hotel, a number that has doubled over the past 18 months.''

 Despite an improving economy, Ward said that among the factors increasing
homelessness are cuts to programs that have helped keep people off the
street, like welfare, counselling and mental health services.


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