A neighborhood like no other in Olympia is almost ready for its grand opening.

Residents will start moving into 30 brand new homes in downtown’s “Plum Street Village” early next month, and they won’t be charged a cent.

The tenants will all be homeless.

The village will have a communal cooking area, bathrooms, showers, and laundry facilities.

“This is going to be a big step in the right direction,” said Olympia’s Homeless Response Coordinator Colin DeForrest.

DeForrest said the majority of the new residents will likely come from the city’s “mitigation site,” a nearby city-owned parking lot where people experiencing homelessness have been living in tents given out by the city in December.

The Plum Street Village residents must be over 18, will have to keep their living spaces clean, and will be required to do service jobs around the site.

While there is no time limit on how long they can stay, DeForrest said the tiny homes are not considered permanent housing for the residents.

“The goal is to not get comfortable and be here for a year,” said DeForrest. “We want you here as long as you need to be here, but we're going to push you to get into permanent housing."

The City of Olympia is hosting an informational meeting about the tiny homes on Thursday, January 17 at 6 p.m. at the Olympia Center, 222 Columbia Street NW.

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