Rental rates have climbed dramatically in Billings in recent years, keeping pace with the skyrocketing price of real estate in the Magic City. It's becoming more and more difficult to find affordable housing.

The struggle is very real for lots of people, but imagine if you are someone who is trying to climb out of homelessness. You're starting to get your life back together, you're working at least one job (probably two) and you're trying to find a place to live. Unfortunately, the days of scoring an apartment for $500 a month are long gone in Billings. The Salvation Army is hoping to alleviate the struggle somewhat with a new mini-house community.

Credit: A&E Design, provided by Salvation Army
Credit: A&E Design, provided by Salvation Army

Groundbreaking is slated for 2023.

The project, dubbed the William Booth Village, will eventually include a total of 28 small, residential "cabins" that will be built on the 2000 block of 6th Ave N, across the street from North Park. The property is currently an empty lot next to a car wash.

The units will provide Tier 1 housing (up to 90 days) and Tier 2 housing (up to two years) for the homeless in Billings. According to the press release, the tiny-home community will be constructed in two phases, with seven cabins and a common-use building launching the project. They wrote,

The new supportive housing program will provide program participants with individual, safe, and peaceful sleeping cabins, along with intensive case management and other needed support, such as skill-based training in culinary arts and property maintenance.

Phase 1 construction cost is estimated at $1.8 million. Major funding has been secured from the Billings Downtown Rotary and the Gianforte Family Foundation, and the Salvation Army expects full Phase 1 funding by early next year.

Salvation Army Kicks-Off Holiday Bell Ringing Season
(Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

Bell ringing season is coming.

If you'd like to learn more about the William Booth Village project you can attend the Salvation Army's Red Kettle Kickoff Breakfast at 8:30 a.m. on November 12. RSVP by contacting Lt. Felecia Pederson at 406-281-7433.

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