PINE RIDGE, S.D. – (RealEstateRama) — A major milestone has been reached in the recovery from the May 2015 storms on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, as the 100th new manufactured home was recently provided to a tribal household. The 100 homes have been installed in just over three months’ time, with the first being turned over on December 9.
“Today marks a large step on the road to recovery for tribal members impacted by last year’s storm,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Gary Stanley. “However, we still have more to do. This is one of the largest housing construction efforts undertaken on the reservation.”
To address the severe housing need on the reservation following the disaster, FEMA initiated a program used for the first time in the continental United States. Under the effort, more than 300 households were identified as eligible for either repairs to their damaged home, or replacement with a new manufactured home. The program will continue until an expected completion date in mid-summer. The manufactured homes are being staged at Ellsworth Air Force Base prior to their final delivery to the reservation.
“We appreciate the efforts of FEMA in assisting our members who were in need following the storms,” said Oglala Sioux President John Yellow Bird Steele. “By providing for such a basic need, these families now have a safe place to call home and have hope for a brighter future.”
All of the manufactured homes are furnished three bedroom units. To mitigate against high winds, all of the homes have been anchored and received insulated skirting. To continue work during the South Dakota winter, specialized equipment was brought in to thaw frozen soils. As part of the installation process, the home is also connected to utilities – electricity, water and sewer/septic lines.
In addition to the 100 manufactured homes placed and given to tribal members, repairs have been completed on an additional 20 homes. The Oglala Sioux Tribe is providing interim housing for households that are displaced while work is underway in repairing or replacing their damaged homes. On average, it has taken about two weeks for families from the time of moving out of the damaged until they can move into the new one. That timeframe has been longer for repair projects, although work is done in a way to minimize the time residents need to be out of their home.