The Seattle City Council voted today to spend $500,000 to house Nickelsville residents. In September, the council plans to evict Nickelsville from the Marginal Way Southwest property where residents have been camping for nearly two years.
Nickelsville’s fate is coming to a head after a long civic discussion about what to do. In the end, concerns about safety and environmental contamination prompted the council to ask Mayor Mike McGinn to act. McGinn had been working with Councilmember Nick Licata to give Nickelsville more options, but the majority of the City Council does not believe encampments are “an acceptable response to homelessness,” according to a city news release.
Instead, the city will use the $500,000 to help Nickelsville residents find treatment and housing. The city already has been in talks with the Union Gospel Mission about sheltering Nickelsville residents.
“Our goal is to provide safe, secure housing to anyone at the West Marginal Way SW location who is willing to accept it,” said Council President Sally Clark.
On June 25, the council will host an evening hearing about alternatives for encampments in the city.