It’s the last day of move-in for residents of the sleeping cabins at Center 70, after a quick change from Portsmouth Olympic Harbour.
“People are really nice,” says cabin resident Marsha Wiggins. “In some stores I spoke to people, really friendly.”
The moving process began early on May 18, after a city council vote in favor of the new summer location.
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“Residents stepped up and helped us move all of our, we got a 5 ton truck and moved all of our belongings,” says Chrystal Wilson, executive director of Our Livable Solutions.
“Two of the residents stayed in Portsmouth and cleaned it spotless, so having their help has been really great in helping that transition,” Wilson continues. “And the help from the city also made it really easy.”
Wiggins and the other cabin residents make the Center 70 space their own through decorations and personal effects, while also opening up to members of the Lakeview community.
“If you’re curious, you know, come meet us,” Wiggins says. “We’re open to talking and we’d like to have, you know, when we settle in, probably maybe another week or so.
“We’re going to see how to set up a neighborhood barbecue thing where everyone comes, has a barbecue and manages to meet us.”
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Wiggins wants his new neighbors to know that adding their community will be no problem.
“We’re just people who need a home and need to get our lives back,” she says.
The new space is larger than that of Portsmouth, offering more opportunities for privacy and activities.
“I’m so grateful for the support from the neighborhood and neighbors who dropped by to give donations or just warm wishes,” Wilson said.
She says people have stopped for tours, including a number of people getting off the park-and-ride buses wanting to see what it’s all about.
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“We’re open and transparent, and we welcome people to take a look,” says Wilson. “But the support the neighborhood has given us has been really great and we’re really grateful for that.”
Wilson says the city plans to move the sleeping cabin program to Portsmouth Olympic Harbor in the fall.
A time will be determined to coincide with when the boats are out of port and the ice is back on the Center 70 rink.
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