By Angie Herrington
The 9-acre campus for the homeless that the city is developing downtown will be a happy, colorful place that is inviting to the whole community, officials said today.
Mayor Ron Littlefield met with members of the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects to discuss the projects vision.
The city last month paid $775,000 to buy the farmers market property on East 11th Street for the project.
The architect group has volunteered to redesign the facility free of charge, because it will be the focus of its National 150th Birthday Project.
Mr. Littlefield said the campus will include a day shelter, relocated local thrift stores and any other services the homeless community would need.
He said he wants the campus to be an inviting and integrated part of the community, and mentioned selling vegetables or arts and crafts as possible ways to achieve that.
So let your imagination run free, Mr. Littlefield told the architects. We got 9 acres. Its a blank campus.
The Community Kitchen, located across the street from the property, will run the day shelter, officials said.
The architects plan to have basic ideas for the project in about a week, city officials said.
Mr. Littlefield is scheduled to meet with the Homeless Coalition and the M.L. King Neighborhood Association on April 20.
Weve taken a common issue that every city deals with and found a unique way to do it, he said.
E-mail Angie Herrington at firstname.lastname@example.org
See tomorrows Chattanooga Times Free Press for full coverage.