Old Yolo County General Hospital Demolition Begins

WOODLAND -- Neighbors around the abandoned Yolo County General Hospital are glad to see demolition crews at work this week. For years, buildings on the 4.5 acre site have been home to vagrants who have lived in the boarded up facility.

City and county officials have been grappling with the problem for years.

Yolo County Housing is spearheading an 80-unit, low-income apartment project that will ironically house people who are transitioning out of homelessness.

It was scary for homeowner Susan Sussdorf-Vigil to see the trash and the homeless people going in and out of the complex at all hours. She says it was an eyesore as well as being dangerous.

"I think things have improved dramatically since construction began. I think it's going to be good," said Sussdorf-Vigil.

The proposed development on West Beamer Street is just across the street from a county building offering an array of social services.

"We're very excited to take a good piece of property and return it to community use," said Yolo County Housing CEO Linda Baker.

It will also house those with mental health issues, but that doesn't concern Sussdorf-Vigil who thinks they are as stigmatized as the homeless.

The plan calls for fencing and a parking area to separate the living units from residents.

"I don't have a problem with it, and I'll be glad when they get the buildings up," said Sussdorf-Vigil.

The project is a joint venture that includes Yolo County, Mercy Housing and New Hope Community Development. The demolition work will take around two months, but the partners must still await a determination of available tax-credits before financing can be arranged and construction begun.