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City sold lot, so it won't be homeless village

There's been a lot of back and forth about a city-owned lot at Third and Front streets in Medford that was going to become a homeless village. Last I remember, someone was going to buy the lot. Does that mean it won't become a homeless village, and who bought the lot?

— Carol S., Medford

It definitely won't become a homeless village, Carol.

Instead, Medford City Council agreed Thursday to sell the lot to Jack Schmidt of Precision Electric for $160,000, plus he'll cover closing costs.

The council previously had considered using the property at Third and Front streets for 14 tiny houses but backed away after surrounding business owners mounted opposition.

Rogue Retreat, an organization devoted to homeless issues, has raised $70,000 so far for the project. Because the Third and Front property is no longer available, Rogue Retreat is looking at other properties in Medford where a homeless village could be located.

A service center property used by Medford police and the Medford Public Works Department on Columbus Avenue is being considered as a possible location for the village. The council Thursday night passed a motion to negotiate a lease with Rogue Retreat for a portion of the service center lot.

Council has also considered using the proceeds from the sale of the Third and Front property to prepare another lot for the homeless village.

— Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. To see a collection of columns, go to mailtribune.com/youasked. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.