Mayor Dickens, City of Atlanta convert shipping containers to housing for homeless

As Atlanta’s unhoused population continues to rise, and temperatures threaten to return to below freezing following a winter weather surge on Wednesday, Feb. 28, Mayor Andre Dickens’s innovative initiative to convert shipping containers to temporary housing has come to fruition, and residents are glowing about their new digs.

The Melody, a temporary single-room occupancy development which will be located in south downtown Atlanta will house up to 40 tenants in studio-style units made up of donated shipping containers. Each unit features a bathroom, bed, and kitchenette, the city said.

Tenants start with a 12-month lease, but the system provides permanent housing, meaning residents can stay as long as they like. Residents are asked to pay up to 30 percent of their income, if they have one, meaning they do not need to pay anything if they do not have a source of income.

The opening of The Melody on Jan. 26 made available the first 40 units for occupancy with plans to open 500 additional units by 2025.

“It’s a way for us to help people while they’re experiencing homelessness to have dignity and humane conditions,” Mayor Andre Dickens said.

In Fulton County’s annual 2024 Point In Time Count, which provides a “snapshot” of homelessness in all Fulton County cities outside of Atlanta, the most recent numbers available from January 2023 indicated that there are 2,679 homeless individuals which marks an increase of more than 600 additional unhoused people from the 2022 count of 2,017

Dickens, in an Instagram post, shared that the rooms are equipped with various amenities, such as air conditioning, heat, a microwave, a refrigerator, a television, free Wi-Fi, laundry facilities, and more. Residents have access to controlled access, camera surveillance, and case managers who provide physical and mental health support.

“Our goal is to offer privacy, independence, and a sense of community by utilizing 40 micro-unit shipping containers. This is just a part of our commitment to producing 500 units of rapid housing on public land by 2025,” Dickens wrote in an Instagram post. “Melody, alongside case management and supportive services, will make a lasting impact in addressing homelessness,” he added. 


The development is named after Melody Bloodworth, an unhoused woman who struggled with mental and ultimately froze to death on the streets in November 2022.

The inaugural rapid housing initiative reportedly is one tenet of the City Of Atlanta’s goal of providing 20,000 affordable housing units in Atlanta by 2030. 

About Post Author


From the Web

Skip to content