Proposal to build homes for homeless in Virginia Key falls under scrutiny, again

Proposal to build homes for homeless in Virginia Key falls under scrutiny, again

MIAMI - The proposal to build tiny homes for the homeless on historic Virginia Key is falling under scrutiny yet again.  

On Tuesday, City of Miami Commissioners held a discussion on the topic and dozens of people shared their opinions. The majority of people CBS4 heard from are opposed to the idea.

About a dozen protestors gathered outside of Miami City Hall.

"Say no to Virginia Key! Say no to Virginia Key!"

The message they're chanting comes with different reasons.

"This looks like deliberate apathy and smells of corruption," says one man.

Some fearing the future for those experiencing homelessness.

"They will be five miles from the closest grocery store and urgent care center.  They won't have access to necessities or even a job close by."

Others worrying a historic beach will no longer be preserved.

"There's planning planning planning, development, planning but I don't see anything about saving our blue spaces and our green spaces.  That is why people come to Miami."

While the African American community calls the idea to house the homeless on Virginia Key, which is a historically black beach, a racist plan.

"Where did you all get the right to make homeless people criminals?  To make a decision to dump them in a historically black area," questions one woman.

Because of heavy backlash, city leaders decided to table the plan to build tiny homes for a period of six months.  The topic was brought back up today as a discussion.

"I've always said from the start, we were only considering Virginia Key because we didn't have anywhere else to look," says Commissioner Joe Carollo.

He continues on to say homelessness is also a county problem and says county officials have just as much of a responsibility to help figure out the right location.

"We've reached some tentative agreements that will soon be formalized, we hope, to bring the tiny homes outside the city of Miami into unincorporated Dade County," explains Carollo.

City leaders haven't said when the vote on a location for tiny homes will happen.

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