by Rob Malcolm

FOLSOM (CBS13) — A Folsom man thinks he’s got the answer to the homeless problem: build a $3 billion city, just for them.

Duane Nason with Citizens Again says he sees the problem clearly.

“We still have about 60,000 chronic homeless living on the streets, and so from the numbers form the last 10 years, it’s going to take 200 years to house all of them,” Nason said.

Instead of building 4,000 more shelters, Nason wants to build an entire city to house America’s homeless. The project won’t be cheap.

Swipe through renderings from Nason’s proposed all-inclusive homeless city.

“I estimate it’s going to cost about $3 billion to build the city, and right now every year we spend about $6 billion on homelessness in general,” Nason said.

He says his idea will be quicker and cost less than current efforts. A mathematician by trade, he left the corporate world to launch Citizens Again.

Nason says the all-inclusive private city still needs a location to be built.

“I’ve looked at a couple of different locations in California. It’s going to have to be in a moderate climate, probably somewhat of a flatland. I’m going to need about 300 acres,” he said.

The idea is getting some mixed reviews from his home base in Folsom.

“It could bring down property values. People don’t want that in their backyard. They want to help, but they don’t want it in their backyard,” Mike Lucio said.

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But Nason says the city would be desirable to its potential residents.

“I need to provide an overwhelming desire for them to want to live here and that’s why I’m going to have an abundance of amenities,” Nason said.

He says the city would include TV pods, cafeterias, underground tunnels, and more. Residents would live in dorm-room style housing in 16-story buildings with five wings per floor. Every neighborhood would have an arcade, and it will all be free to the homeless.

“Definitely it’s an ambitious project. There’s never been anything like this in the history of the country. This is going to be very something very massive. It’s going to require a lot of people to work together on this,” Nason said.

Right now, he’s working alone and says he needs $50,000 to get off the ground. Nason says crowdfunding is slow.

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“I’ve just started this week with the crowdfunding and it’s about $485 as of today,” he said.

He’s been planning for two years and said he does have moderate support.

“I think it’s a good idea. There’s a lot of talk about the homeless and them spreading themselves out. Having one central location would be a good idea,” Alyssa Kavanaugh said.

Nason says he’s relying on philanthropy and donations to get the project off the ground but he plans to get the government to contribute when it is fully operational.

He also plans to have residents work jobs to keep costs down and manageable.

Comments (9)
  1. Alexw says:

    Let’s build a ghetto for the homeless. What could go wrong?

  2. Fixer51 says:

    I hope Mr. Nason studies the history of Chicago’s now-demolished Cabrini-Green development to see how one noble experiment turned into misery for thousands.

    1. Morey Soffo says:

      You beat me to it. Also, Bed-Stuy in NYC. What an age we live in where Stupid is News.

  3. scott.tx says:

    its like a camp that we can concentrate all the homeless in

  4. Artor says:

    This sounds like a guy who doesn’t understand the problem at all, and just wants to get the homeless out of sight.

  5. wes says:

    arcosanti has been at this since the 70’s maybe take a lesson

  6. J.R. Doe says:

    Once completed, Nason should call his new creation a Sanctuary District. He could then replicate his success elsewhere with additional Sanctuary Districts.

  7. U. Guotta Bekidding says:

    With enclosed, climate controlled buildings, there’s no need for this pipe-dream of a homeless utopia to be built in a “moderate climate”. The only need for a moderate climate would be to accommodate those who relapse and don’t want to sleep in the dorms. This guy is perpetrating a well thought out crowdfunding scam.

  8. Peter says:

    Multiple villages , cities , towns whatever fits the bill built in various locations in a moderate climate on the cheapest land possible constructed like a normal town, one or two story buildings to live in. Possibly locate vacated towns in this country that could be utilized. A Grocery store , a Hardware store and or various restaurants and as many of the usual stores needed would provide the back drop so that the appearance would be that of a very ordinary town in America. The difference would be a big fence would surround the city. A gated community of sorts and Inside would be Professional Medical Personal and interns from various Schools studying their chosen field and working with the homeless. Additionally all types of professionals and interns from hair styling to welding would make up the administrative aspect to the town. The homeless people who need a boost up would live in dorms or tents or whatever they want and study under these interns and professionals . They could live near a false river in a cardboard box if they so choose to live that way. However unless a person learns a vocation which would allow them to be productive to themselves in society once again otherwise they would stay in this protected environment . A person could and would hopefully get cleaned up both medically and physically in side this town or city. Many mental health professionals would be available as would the interns . Police and Cadets studying to be Peace Officers would provide security . Once a past homeless person completes their chosen field of study or training they would be assisted with a return to a productive life in society and they may choose to remain and help others. Homeless people are not going to want to live in Sanitized high rises. Many that have mental issues want to continue to live just the way they live in our cities now. The difference would be their health and safety needs would be taken care of and they would be allowed to live as they choose but in a safe area and not on the streets of the cities in America. By definition a homeless person living in this protected city would no longer be considered homeless as they would have an address and a defined place to occupy and sleep. Americas stats on homelessness would be down considerably .

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