Photo: Panoramic Interests

Last week, Berkeley City Council unanimously passed a proposal to commission 100 homes for Berkeley’s homeless. The city is currently taking proposals from developers for the “Step Up Housing” Initiative, but Patrick Kennedy’s MicroPAD homes are likely to be an easy win. In fact, Berkeley City Councilmember Ben Bartlett mentioned to Curbed SF that he had the MicroPAD in mind when drafting the proposal.

The proposal states that there are currently between 900 and 1,200 homeless people living in Berkeley, which is still far less than San Francisco’s 7,000. It even forewarns of the possible negative impact the Trump administration will incur: “The Trump administration’s anticipated funding cuts may cause the City’s homeless population to multiply exponentially. This is a health and safety emergency that has cost lives and degraded standards of living for all residents. We see this crisis as an opportunity for innovation.”

Next steps include identifying parcels of City owned land for the homes, speeding up the land use approval process and establishing a competitive bidding process for the design.

MicroPADs come complete with a bed, desk, private bathroom, kitchenette and storage. The 160-square foot stackable pods were specifically created for homeless and low-income individuals as a sustainable way of getting people off of the streets and out of their tents.

Considering the recent barrage of storms hitting the Bay Area, temporary encampments constructed by the homeless, such as unsecured tents or tarps, is not a sustainable solution. These steel mini-apartments could be the answer and hopefully, San Francisco will follow suit.

MicroPad_interior 2-compressed

Photo: Panoramic Interests

MicroPad_interior 1-compressed

Photo: Panoramic Interests

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