EUGENE, Ore. -- Community Supported Shelters, the nonprofit behind Conestoga Huts in Eugene and Springfield, began building six more of the temporary shelters in Eugene Tuesday morning.
The six new huts will be located on the west end of Skinner Butte Park near the intersection of Cheshire Avenue and North Washington Street on an empty lot owned by the City of Eugene.
Jim Schmidt, volunteer coordinator for the hut construction crew, said more than 130 of the shelters have already been built in the Eugene-Springfield area.
The shelters are low cost, coming in at around $1,000 a unit, and provide a secure, dry and lockable place for those who would otherwise be living on the street.
“It helps to give people a step up – a helping hand as it were – to get going again,” Schmidt said.
The huts can also be assembled rapidly. Schmidt said volunteers plan to have two huts completed by the end of the day Tuesday, with four more finished in the next two weeks. People can begin moving into the huts immediately after they are finished.
Jaclyn Hoffman, another volunteer, said the huts go beyond simply providing shelter.
“The point beyond the basic need of the shelter and the warmth or being able to have some shade, is that people feel that they’re cared for and that they have a sense of community and home,” Hoffman said.