SAN JOSE, Calif. (KRON) — The City of San Jose looks to add more supportive housing for the homeless by purchasing the Arena Hotel near downtown.
On Tuesday, Governor Gavin Newsom awarded the city $25.2 million in Homekey funds that will go towards allocating the 90-unit hotel to turn it into interim and future permanent housing for homeless individuals and couples.
“In 2016, San José pioneered a new approach to housing our unhoused neighbors by buying and converting hotels and motels into dignified living accommodations for our most vulnerable residents. That model successfully moved thousands of San Joséans off the street, said San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo.
“Governor Newsom’s commitment to invest in motel conversions statewide through Homekey gives us an opportunity to scale this solution. Thanks to him and the State of California for the most recent investment of $25.2 million for San José’s Homekey purchase, the Arena Hotel.”
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The hotel will give the city some much-needed space to help San Jose’s unhoused individuals off the street. In 2020, the city also received $14.5 million from Homekey to purchase the SureStay Hotel.
Project Homekey was created in response to the pandemic to assist homeless residents vulnerable to COVID-19 to receive free emergency shelter in hotels across Santa Clara County. The state program subsidized housing run by local governments and nonprofits. With Tuesday’s announcement, the program has now surpassed 10,00 units funded since it began less than two years ago.