Affordable Housing in Juneau: Providing Shelter and Hope

Juneau, a picturesque city nestled in Alaska, has long struggled to address the issue of affordable housing for its low-income citizens. Unfortunately, this has resulted in Juneau having the highest rate of homelessness per capita...

photo of woman and boy in affordable housing unit

Juneau, a picturesque city nestled in Alaska, has long struggled to address the issue of affordable housing for its low-income citizens. Unfortunately, this has resulted in Juneau having the highest rate of homelessness per capita in the state, surpassing even larger cities like Anchorage and Fairbanks. In fact, Juneau is recognized as one of the most homeless communities in America, with a per capita rate three times that of Los Angeles County.

Supporting Low-Income Families

In a bid to combat this crisis, St. Vincent de Paul (SVdP) has played a vital role in providing affordable housing options. Over the past two decades, SVdP has developed, built, and currently manages 125 apartments across six buildings located in Downtown, Douglas, and the Valley. These apartments cater to various low-income households, ensuring that individuals and families have a safe and stable place to call home.

Tenants of these apartments contribute by paying rent, with many working individuals self-sufficiently covering the full rent-controlled rate. For those facing homelessness or transitional housing needs, SVdP offers assistance through their thrift store, donations, and rental assistance programs supported by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Meeting Transitional Housing Needs

Despite their best efforts, the demand for transitional housing far exceeds SVdP's current capacity. Their transitional housing facility, which consists of 26 units, has a wait-list of over 100 applications at any given time. However, SVdP goes above and beyond by seeking support from sister agencies and churches when confronted with particularly urgent and compelling cases.

To learn more about transitional housing or to inquire about available options, contact Scot at 789-5535 ext. 4.

Empowering Through Supportive Housing Programs

SVdP manages two significant supportive housing programs tailored specifically for the Juneau community. The Supportive Housing Program provides permanent housing vouchers for four apartments located at their shelter. This initiative aims to offer stability and support to individuals in need. Additionally, the Supportive Housing for Very Low-Income Seniors program offers permanent rental assistance to eligible seniors at Smith Hall, enabling them to maintain safe and affordable housing in their golden years. In total, these programs ensure that an average of 40 households per year are able to enjoy the benefits of secure and decent permanent housing.

Discover Our Diverse Properties

For more information on any of the properties listed below, reach out to SVdP at 789-5535 or via email at [email protected].

Channel View Apartments

Channel View apartments Caption: Channel View apartments are located at 345 Gastineau Ave. (Google screenshot)

345 Gastineau Ave
Channel View Apartments, situated atop Gastineau Channel with breathtaking views of Douglas Island, were constructed in 2004 through collaboration between AWARE, JAMHI, The Glory Hall, and attorney Stephen Sorenson. This remarkable low-income housing project comprises 22 apartments, the majority of which are one-bedroom units. First-floor units feature patios, while upper-floor units offer stunning views. Channel View welcomes households earning less than 50 or 60% of the Area Median Income, providing secure and comfortable living spaces. Rent includes all utilities, and parking is available for a monthly fee of $25. CVS's unique location on a hillside necessitated an entrance on the 5th floor, with an elevator ensuring accessibility for all residents. Notably, the building's retaining wall offers protection from natural hazards like mudslides, although bears, which are common in the area, remain unfazed. Channel View accepts all types of housing vouchers.

Paul's Place Apartments

Paul's Place apartments Caption: Paul’s Place apartments are located at 8617 Teal Street.

8617 Teal Street
Located on the first floor of SVdP's Shelter building, Paul's Place Apartments feature seven permanent low-income units built in 2004 by Dan Austin. This housing option, conveniently situated one block away from the Nugget Mall bus stop, caters to households that have recently experienced homelessness. Consisting of five one-bedroom and two two-bedroom apartments, Paul's Place offers ground-floor, ADA accessible units. Tenants benefit from a shared playground, a laundry room, and ample free parking. Rent covers all utilities, providing residents a worry-free living arrangement. Paul's Place accepts all types of housing vouchers.

Strasbaugh Apartments

Strasbaugh apartments Caption: Strasbaugh Apartments are located at 231 Gastineau Ave.

231 Gastineau Ave
Strasbaugh Apartments, an exemplary affordable housing project, was originally built in 1993 by Housing First and acquired by SVdP in 2013. This secure building atop Gastineau Avenue offers seven units, including mixed-efficiency, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom layouts. Residents enjoy stunning panoramic views of downtown Juneau and Mt. Roberts. Each unit comes with all utilities included, and a storage locker is provided in the garage. Free parking is available, although limited, and laundry facilities are accessible for $1 per load. While only one unit is handicap accessible due to the building's age, a staircase across the street conveniently connects residents to the heart of Franklin Street in downtown Juneau. Strasbaugh accepts all types of housing vouchers.

Hillview Apartments

Hill View Apartments Caption: Hillview Apartments are located at 1801 Douglas Highway.

1801 Douglas Highway
Hillview Apartments offer a unique living experience with their two-building layout spread across the picturesque Douglas Highway. Originally built in 1996 by Housing First and later acquired by SVdP, this housing complex consists of 15 apartments, including six efficiencies, six one-bedroom units, and three two-bedroom units. Tenants enjoy balconies and patio areas, along with shared laundry rooms that offer affordable $1 loads. Hillview boasts breathtaking views of downtown Juneau and Mt. Roberts. All utilities are included in the rent, and tenant income requirements are slightly lower due to the use of HOME funds during construction. Beautiful trails and the convenience of a nearby bus stop make Hillview an attractive choice for residents seeking accessible transportation options. Housing vouchers of all types are accepted.

Smith Hall

Smith Hall Caption: Smith Hall is located at 8619 Teal St.

8619 Teal St
Smith Hall, an HUD 202 building designated for low-income seniors, was constructed in 1998 by Dan Austin on land donated by the Smith family. Exclusively available to seniors aged 62 and older with an annual income below 50% of the Area Median Income, Smith Hall offers 24 one-bedroom units. Subsidized rent, equivalent to 30% of a resident's income, covers all utilities. The three-story building boasts several communal areas, including a sunroom, puzzle room, computer room, plant room, exercise area, and meeting room with communal bookshelves. On-site staff is available during regular office hours, while emergency assistance is accessible after hours and on weekends. A communal garden and free parking with storage lockers add to the amenities. Smith Hall, conveniently located near the Nugget Mall bus stop, provides easy access to essential services and community resources. Due to the already subsidized nature of each unit, Smith Hall does not accept housing vouchers and typically has a lengthy waitlist.

Shelter

8617 Teal St
The Shelter, located at SVdP's Teal Street campus, stands as a cornerstone of support for those experiencing homelessness. Acquired by St. Vincent de Paul in the mid-1980s, this multi-purpose building has played various roles throughout its history, encompassing a soup kitchen, offices, thrift store, daycare center, and warming center. Today, the Shelter primarily serves as a family shelter, accommodating singles, couples, and families with children, providing a safe haven for anyone seeking assistance. The Shelter offers 26 unfurnished rooms of approximately 250 square feet, each equipped with a bathroom. Shared kitchen, shower, and laundry facilities are conveniently located down the hall. While most rooms are transitional living spaces with a two-year limit, four rooms are permanent and reserved for chronically homeless individuals with disabilities. The building is secured, and visitor access is restricted. The Shelter maintains a drug and alcohol-free environment while actively combating domestic violence. Residents are required to contribute by performing assigned chores. With an elevator ensuring accessibility for all, free laundry facilities, and complimentary book and movie areas, the Shelter endeavors to provide a supportive and nurturing environment. In addition to offering accommodation, the Shelter houses the Sobering Center run by the city, a maintenance area to support all six SVdP buildings, the Dan Austin Center which includes a community navigator, and Ida's Attic, where free clothes are provided to the homeless. The Shelter also features a large community center with a full kitchen, serving as a space for various aid programs during Thanksgiving and Christmas.


At SVdP, our mission is to create a community where everyone has a place to call home. Through our diverse housing options and ongoing support programs, we strive to provide affordable and secure housing for individuals and families in need. If you require more information or wish to explore the possibilities, please reach out to us at the contact details provided above. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of those facing housing challenges in Juneau, Alaska.

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