Springfield Manufactured Home Park Solutions Collaborative

The Oregon Solutions project brought together a team of public, private and civic partners toward innovative solutions to assist residents, owners and renters who are living in mobile homes in parks in substandard conditions and/or who face being evicted as a result of redevelopment pressures. The collaborative aimed to create a social service assistance response which will help local communities understand what opportunities might be available to improve or replace homes or park infrastructure, to move homes to new sites, or to provide assistance in relocation or housing searches for park residents.

Problem

Springfield is an example of an Oregon community grappling with a large population of residents (estimated 1,400 households) facing a strong risk of displacement. Such communities are often ill-equipped to sufficiently serve displaced residents in finding new houses after a park closure.

The Process:

The City of Springfield initiated stakeholder meetings with assistance from Oregon Solutions and the South Valley / Mid Coast Regional Solutions Center.  These conversations resulted in the desire for an impartial collaborative approach to assisting residents, owners and renters, living in mobile home parks who risk being evicted or displaced as a result of redevelopment pressures or other circumstances outside of their control.  Following a request by the City of Springfield, the project sponsor, Oregon Solutions completed its assessment and asked that the “Manufactured Home Park Solutions Collaborative” be designated an Oregon Solutions project.  On December 11, 2015, Governor Brown designated the collaborative an Oregon Solutions project and selected Springfield Mayor Christine Lundberg; and, Vicki Walker, Oregon State Director as the co-conveners.

Springfield is one example of an Oregon community grappling with a large population of manufactured home park residents (estimated 1,400 households) facing a strong risk of displacement.  Neither the local governments nor regional service providers are currently equipped to meet the difficult challenge of sufficiently serving displaced residents, helping them find new housing.  The Oregon Solutions process was utilized to develop a housing and social service assistance response which is coordinated and ready for implementation. A formal action plan and “tool kit” enables a jurisdiction faced with notice of park closure to provide relocation options, such as a “decision tree”, which would help local communities understand what opportunities might be available to improve or replace homes or park infrastructure, move homes to new sites, or provide assistance in relocation or housing searches for park residents.

Additionally, the Oregon Field Office of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development has designated Springfield and Eugene as the focus of its two-year Community Needs Assessment program. As part of this initiative, HUD has identified distressed manufactured home parks as a key engagement area.  Similarly, the South Willamette Valley/Mid-Coast Regional Solutions Advisory Committee designated the project of addressing manufactured home park issues within the region  as a Regional Solutions’ priority.

Objectives

A collaborative to identify opportunities and resources available to rapidly respond to park closures, or other similar emergencies, and to provide residents assistance in relocation or housing searches through the development of a coordinated housing and social service decision making and engagement process.  The process created a structure for coordinated communication between impacted residents, local decision makers and service providers.  The participants in the collaborative have worked to make their work products transferable throughout Oregon.

Results

The City of Springfield took a proactive approach to better prepare their community to aid vulnerable mobile park residents by developing a coordinated housing and social service assistance response plan to channel resources and services to residents facing dislocation resulting from park closures.  The project included an action plan and "toolkit" enabling a jurisdiction faced with notice of a park closure to provide a comprehensive listing of relocation options and assistance.

 


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