We recently shared the exciting news that our current Exodus Residence will be relocated to the former Augustana Care Center in the Elliot Park Neighborhood of Minneapolis. In the midst of a statewide housing and homelessness crisis, the new Exodus will provide urgently needed permanent homes to 203 people who need housing stability, many of whom are older and medically frail, including many veterans.
Due to the previous use of the building and out of respect for those who live and work there, we have not had the authority to engage the community as we normally would in a project of this size. Under State and Federal law, decommissioning of nursing facilities is kept under tight wraps and sharing this with the neighborhood would have resulted in a violation of state law by the sellers, Cassia. Since the news became public, Catholic Charities has been actively engaging the community and looks forward to robust future partnerships.
While we are excited to share this news, we understand that neighbors have questions. Below is a list of commonly asked questions, if you would like to speak with someone directly, or have a Catholic Charities representative visit your group, please contact Amanda Horner at Amanda.firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT IS EXODUS?
Since 1995, Catholic Charities has operated the current Exodus Residence next door to St. Olaf Church in downtown Minneapolis. The current Exodus provides 95 temporary (up to 24 months) homes to veterans, people with complex medical conditions and people who have previously experienced homelessness.
We also operate 10 medical respite beds, a partnership with Hennepin Healthcare, to provide short-term residential care for people who are experiencing homelessness and recovering from an illness or injury. The medical respite program allows us to help those in need recover, while finding them a stable place to stay and saving the hospital system millions of dollars.
The new Exodus Residence will be an apartment building providing homes and respite care to 203 people who need housing stability, many of whom are older and medically frail, including many veterans. We look forward to being a neighbor with the Augustana Senior Apartments next door and exploring continued opportunities to collaborate with the residents and staff.
HOW HAS THE NEIGHBORHOOD BEEN INVOLVED?
We believe in transparency and working with communities in which we offer housing, programs and services. As soon as the previous owners, Cassia had fulfilled all legal requirements on Monday, December 2 and the news regarding the new Exodus building was made public, representatives from Catholic Charities met with representatives of Elliot Park Neighborhood, Inc. (EPNI). We also met with East Town Business Partnership on December 5 and have plans to meet with other neighborhood stakeholders including Bethlehem Baptist Church, Hennepin Health, Augustana Senior Apartments and the EPNI Building Land Use and Housing Committee in the upcoming weeks. We welcome the input and feedback of community stakeholders. We look forward to increased presence and involvement in the Elliot Park community and are exploring other opportunities to contribute to neighborhood vitality.
If you have questions regarding neighborhood involvement or would like someone from Catholic Charities to speak to your group, please contact Amanda Horner at Amanda.email@example.com.
WILL PEOPLE LIVE AT EXODUS?
Yes. The new Exodus residence provides safe, stable, permanent homes to 203 people who have previously experienced homelessness, veterans and those with complex medical needs. Unlike an emergency shelter, residents at Exodus sign a lease with all the rights and responsibilities of a market-rate lease. We look forward to being a neighbor with the Augustana Senior Apartments next door and exploring continued opportunities to collaborate with the residents and staff. There will be shorter term respite opportunities for 30 people being released from the hospital and need additional time until a more stable situation can be found for them. These homes and respite care are critically needed in our community.
WHY ELLIOT PARK?
Elliot Park is a diverse, growing, and vibrant Minneapolis neighborhood near downtown. It provides convenient access to bike lanes and public transit routes and offers easy access to services such as health care and Catholic Charities’ Mary F. Frey Opportunity Center. With academic, faith, healthcare and business institutions nearby, the Elliot Park neighborhood provides residents at Exodus the ability to put down roots, find stability and pursue new opportunities.
As older adults look for more home-like settings, skilled nursing communities like Augustana Health Care Center are experiencing a decline in demand nationwide. Locally, many nursing homes are operating below capacity. Rather than leave the future of a critical building in Elliot Park uncertain, Cassia and Catholic Charities found a solution where an adaptive reuse preserves the social purpose of the building and allows the opportunity to offer more resources to support low-income adults in downtown Minneapolis while adding to the neighborhood’s vitality.
WHEN WILL RENOVATIONS BE COMPLETE?
We anticipate the renovations to be complete sometime in summer or fall of 2021.
WHAT ELSE WILL BE LOCATED IN THE BUILDING?
Hennepin Healthcare will operate a storefront clinic for people experiencing housing instability to access medical care. We are also exploring other opportunities to contribute to neighborhood vitality and welcome suggestions from residents and neighbors.
If you have any further questions or are interested in having a representative from Catholic Charities visit with your group to learn more about the new Exodus Residence, please contact Amanda Horner at Amanda.Horner@cctwincities.org