Phoenix mobile home park dilemma: City tries to help residents facing displacement
PHOENIX - The City of Phoenix is looking to rescue three mobile home parks and the residents living there are days or weeks away from evicted.
Several owners from the Weldon, Peri-Winkle, and Las Casitas mobile home parks protested ahead of March 22's city council meeting. And it comes at a time when home prices re up, rent is up, and homelessness is growing. And many of the mobile homes are in no condition to move.
They say a man's home is his castle. Even if it sits on a set of wheels. And moving can be a royal pain.
"They're just basically kicking us out of our homes, you know. I mean, I thought I was going to be here until the day I die," said Dennis Huddleston, a 31-year resident at the Weldon mobile home park.
Huddleston raised a family here and used to be the manager, but he says the dollars it takes to move nowadays doesn't make any sense.
"A two-bedroom apartment, you're looking at $2,100 and $2,200 a month compared to what we pay, the most is $600 a month if the water bill goes up higher, you know."
The city got wind of the trouble, and came up with a four part plan:
- A temporary stop on redeveloping mobile home parks.
- Adding a new zoning overlay to create stricter standards.
- Using $2.5 million fund for displaced residents from the federal American rescue plan.
- Study the overall mobile home park inventory.
However, the only motion to pass in the Mar. 22 meeting was the motion for the $2.5 million fund.
Not everyone would be sad to see this park turned to dust.
"Me? I'm glad it's going away. I mean to be honest, all there is is drug addicts in here," said Patrick, a resident.
But for other residents, many who own the mobile home, but not the land it sits on, the battle is out of their hands as outside forces storm the castle.
"I'm hoping they don't kick us out and give us more time. So we can find something. We're looking, it's just hard right now," said Huddleston.