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Friday, December 8, 2023
Dec. 8, 2023

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Vancouver Housing Authority amps up security with more cameras, alarms, fencing, alarms at complexes

$250,000 grant will provide more safety equipment at public housing facilities

By , Columbian staff reporter

The Vancouver Housing Authority will update security measures in four of its public housing facilities, thanks to a grant.

The housing authority will add surveillance cameras, more lighting, security alarms and fencing to The Elwood, The Meridian, Caples Terrace apartments and Englund Manor. Funding for this project comes from a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development grant of $250,000.

The Vancouver Housing Authority is the only agency in Washington to receive funding in this round of grants.

“We’re always looking for opportunities to bring more money into the community,” Chief Operating Officer Andy Silver said, “whether it’s adding new housing stock or looking for ways to increase safety or improve the buildings we already have.”

Tenny Creek Assisted Living Community is the only public housing building in Vancouver not receiving updates. That is because it is a new facility. The assisted-living facility also already has 24/7 staffing, a controlled entrance and security cameras on the premises, Silver said.

The public housing facilities already have some safety measures to protect its residents like cameras, and some have security staff. The new project is intended to enhance pre-existing measures.

“There’s a perception that crime has increased in our community in the last few years,” Silver said. “And we certainly hear safety concerns at times from some of our tenants, so we’re looking for ways to make sure areas are really well lit and make sure there aren’t any areas that don’t have coverage from security cameras.”

The enhancement of security features should be completed by the end of the year, Silver said.

“The safety of families and individuals living in HUD housing is of utmost importance, which is why I’m pleased that nearly half a million in funding will come to our region to help support housing authorities to make homes safer and more secure,” HUD Northwest Regional Administrator Margaret Salazar said in a press release.

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This story was made possible by Community Funded Journalism, a project from The Columbian and the Local Media Foundation. Top donors include the Ed and Dollie Lynch Fund, Patricia, David and Jacob Nierenberg, Connie and Lee Kearney, Steve and Jan Oliva, The Cowlitz Tribal Foundation and the Mason E. Nolan Charitable Fund. The Columbian controls all content. For more information, visit columbian.com/cfj.

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