YMCA Veterans’ Housing in Salem

Courtney Place

Thanks in part to $6.1 million from Oregon Lottery-backed bonds, a groundbreaking ceremony recently took place for a new veterans’ housing project in Salem. The new building — which will be known as “Courtney Place” — will serve low income and at-risk veterans from Marion and Polk counties with a state-of-the-art, 34-unit facility in the shadow of Oregon’s State Capitol.

An army colonel greets visitors

Addressing Veteran Homelessness — Head On

It’s estimated that about one in ten homeless people in Oregon is a military veteran. They struggle with many of the same challenges that other homeless people do, but can also impacted by issues relating to their service to our country. Some experience PTSD; others may find it difficult simply transitioning to civilian life and work. Courtney Place is designed to address the challenges are unique to veterans.

The new complex in Salem will serve vets from both Marion and Polk counties, including accommodations for women veterans. Because Courtney Place is a YMCA facility, residents will be able to take advantage of YMCA programs that assist with life skills and job placement, helping them find a new path forward.

Pictured: State Chaplain Col. Jacob A. Scott greets attendees at the groundbreaking ceremony.

A Former YMCA Resident Gives Back

Oregon Senator Peter Courtney speaks from the podium

Peter Courtney’s Vision

When Peter Courtney accepted a job in Salem in 1969, he had no idea where he was going to live. He discovered the YMCA and made it his home for the next two years. Fond memories from his time in Room 206 inspire him even now.

Now Oregon’s longest serving lawmaker, Senator Courtney continues to support the institution that meant so much to him personally. When he heard about the proposed YMCA veterans’ housing project, he made it his mission to ensure this important project would come to fruition, successfully securing the majority of the funds for its construction.

Peter Courtney, now in his late seventies, announced his upcoming retirement just months before the ceremonial groundbreaking for the project that now bears his name, Courtney Place. And while Senator Courtney plans to retire from public life, the new facility will honor his contributions for years to come.

Courtney Place veterans' housing in Salem under construction

UPDATE: What a Difference a Few Months Makes

Just a few months after groundbreaking, we can see that construction is already well underway. Once completed, the four-story apartment complex will have one- and two-bedroom units and will serve qualifying Marion and Polk County veterans (based on income level). And not a moment too soon!

Leveraging the Lottery’s reputation for excellence

An arrow heading upward over illustration of coins

What Are Lottery-Backed Bonds?

Because of the Oregon Lottery’s professional reputation and financial strength, the State of Oregon is able to take advantage of financing options to accomplish many important projects. Lottery-backed bonds (like those that helped make Courtney Place possible) are a tool that allows the State to capitalize on the stability and reliability of the Lottery to raise monies to accomplish these goals. Your play helps keep Oregon strong!