MCPHERSON, Kan. (KSNW) – The McPherson Housing Coalition is building 10 tiny cottages near the corner of Oak and Skancke. Chris Goodson, the executive director for the coalition, says the fully finished, 440 square feet homes will serve as shelters for people experiencing homelessness or those at risk of homelessness.

“It’s going to be a life-changer for many, many families,” said Goodson.

Karolyn Moore, McPherson Housing Coalition program director, says the project costs around half a million dollars, with each cottage costing roughly $50,000. The cottages will consist of two bedrooms, one bathroom, a kitchen, and a laundry area.

“We’re hoping to surround them with services and surround them with relationships and help them to see that there’s a part out of where they are right now,” said Moore.  

According to Moore, people living in the cottages will not have to pay for anything. After a difficult year because of the pandemic, Moore says the number of people who fell under McPherson’s poverty line increased. So providing this housing opportunity will be beneficial to the community.

“We know that we have families sleeping on people’s couches,” said Moore.

Families will be the main priority for the coalition, followed by the elderly and finally, single adults. Families staying in the cottages will have access to legal, health, and mental services. Moore says 90 days will be the maximum number of days that families will be allowed to stay in the cottages.

“Depends on what issues they come to us with, what kind of baggage are they bringing, and what do we need to help them sort through,” said Moore.

Neighbors in the area are concerned that providing the housing service could bring crime to the area. Moore responded to that concern.

“We’re not bringing people in from anyplace else to live. These folks already live and work in McPherson.”

“If we have people on the property that are doing things they’re not supposed to be, obviously, they are going to be removed from the property,” Goodson added.

A property manager will also be living in the area, assuring issues are addressed.

The executive director says the area will be beneficial for people to have easy access to other community services. They hope for the cottages to be completed approximately in a year and a half.

For more information about the cottages, click here.