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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) – Plans to establish Casa Esperanza, a halfway house for homeless women and children in northeast Bakersfield, will now move forward.
“We wanted to signal that we are here to be a good neighbor and that we want to be part of the community,” said Lisa Elzy Watson, Casa Esperanza board member,
The months-long battle between neighbors and town planners ended when Bakersfield City Council agreed to move forward on Wednesday afternoon. The house will open on Haley Street and Panorama Drive, directly across from Bakersfield College.
“We were overwhelmed,” said Karen Noriega, who lives down the street from the house. “None of us object to what this represents, I personally donate to the mission every month, but we believe there were better places with better facilities.”
The city council’s vote was only a formality because the state had already given the green light, but the council recognized the good neighbor policy of Casa Esperanza.
“There are guidelines for the people who live in our house,” said Elzy Watson. “They will respect, the good neighbor policy also includes being sensitive to our neighbors if they have a question or request.”
Transitional housing is permitted “as of right” in areas designated for single-family homes.