KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As concerns grow over the homeless population in Kansas City, Missouri, Pallet has plans to send help.
Pallet shelters are set up in villages in one in every five states across the United States.
“To date we’ve created close to 2,000 shelter beds in states all across America, mostly on the west coast," Brandon Bills, a spokesperson for Pallet, said.
The company's move to the Midwest was based on the need.
“We’re really here because homelessness has reached a level of humanitarian crisis in America," Bills aid
Following the death of KCMO man Scott "6ixx" Eicke due to the cold, camps were set up near Westport and other spots around Kansas City. The camps grabbed the attention of city leaders and forced them to act.
“We’ve seen over the winter months that Kansas City government really stepped up, both with the warming center at Bartle Hall, making sure that we allowed for hotel rooms for many in our homeless population and now we’re going to make sure that we have solutions for short-term, intermediate and long-term," KCMO Mayor Quinton Lucas said.
On Saturday, Lucas and Missouri Representative Emanuel Cleaver II, announced the Department of Housing and Urban Development allocated $8.3 million to the city to help with issues related to homelessness.
A portion of the funding will help provide 140 beds through the Tiny Homes Village Initiative provided by Pallet.
“They are extremely durable, they last at least 10 years each and they are versatile shelter solution because you can take them down as your city’s needs change," Bills said.
The shelters are anywhere from 60 to 100 square feet and are made of inorganic materials that are resistant to mold and pests. While they're set up as a village, they are only meant to house people for the short-term.
“We always build them in a village format, so people can engage in community, people can connect with the neighbors that live in this place with them and access the on-site services, such as bathrooms on-site, meal prep on-site, all the above for peoples transition back into permanent housing," Bills said.
Currently, the city has not decided on a location for the Pallet shelters. As soon as they do, the shelters will be shipped to Kansas City and set up. Each shelter will take about 30 minutes to build, according to Bills.