SALEM, Ore. —More than 1,000 new residential and supportive housing units and beds are expected to come available by July 2025, filling a critical need in communities throughout the state, according to Oregon Health Authority (OHA) estimates.
Once completed, OHA expects the new projects to increase the state’s behavioral health housing capacity by about 20 percent.
The emerging capacity springs from more than $220 million in behavioral health investments made by the 2021 Oregon Legislature. OHA has distributed these funds to housing providers over the past two years to bolster residential treatment capacity throughout the state.
“We are seeing the results of this investment bearing fruit,” said OHA Behavioral Health Director Ebony Clarke. “These investments are a giant step toward closing the residential housing gap and will add much-needed capacity during a time of great need.”
OHA is creating a comprehensive and robust dashboard providing details of the investments by county and by program, along with an estimated occupancy timeline. The dashboard is scheduled to go live this fall.
According to the dashboard approximately $100 million grants awarded in 2021 to Oregon counties will yield 712 new units and beds. Another $123 million awarded to social service providers will boost capacity by 382. An additional 42 youth residential beds are also in development.
Timelines for such projects can typically take years to complete due to logistical considerations. The calculations include development costs such as purchasing real estate, facility renovations, not operating revenues.
There have been three completed projects to date.
- Columbia Care Twin Pines in Central Point renovated 8 new beds. The project was completed May 2022 and serves people with mental illness.
- Sequoia Mental Health Inc. renovated 5 new beds in Hillsboro. The project serves people with psychiatric disabilities.
- Shangri-La Harlow House in Eugene created 5 beds for people with serious and persistent mental illness. The project was completed in November 2022.
The dashboard shows a total capacity in all forms of residential housing of 4,908 beds and supportive housing units and a cumulative cost of more than $316 million. The largest total is in supportive housing, followed by rental assistance. More than 1,000 beds are classified as supportive housing.
The dashboard content does not yet include housing supports and services funded through Measure 110.
To date, Measure 110 providers have funded 38 supportive and transitional housing projects and have created 188 new service units and beds. Most are single-family residences or renovations that were converted into supportive housing.
OHA is currently conducting a study to determine residential mental health and substance use treatment capacity throughout the state, identify gaps and guide investments. OHA expects to complete the study by the end of the year. It will inform the state’s five-year plan to expand behavioral health treatment in Oregon.