Vandal damages tiny home village designed for homeless

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — County officials and police say the opening of a tiny home village for homeless people in North Portland has been delayed after a vandal destroyed nearly every sleeping pod in the shelter.

Officer Melissa Newhard, a Portland Police Bureau spokeswoman, told The Oregonian that the vandal entered the St. Johns Village on Dec. 19 and broke out windows in 15 of the shelter's 19 tiny homes. The vandalism caused about $8,000 damage in the newly-purchased single-occupancy pods.

Each of the pods, or tiny homes, is about 8-by-12 feet, with electricity, heat systems and a built-in bed. A common building with a kitchen, bathroom and other amenities will be added to the site.

The pods had only been at the site for about two days before the vandal struck, Joint Office of Homeless Services spokesman Denis Theriault said.

The shelter was originally expected to open at the end of the December, but the vandalism and other delays have pushed that date until Feb. 1.

Residents will be allowed to live at the site for up to two years while they seek more permanent housing.