Austin buys a hotel to turn it into supportive shelter for the homeless
Texas Bungalows Hotel and Suites is soon to be converted into supportive accommodation for Austin’s homeless.
Austin, Texas – – On Wednesday, Austin City Council voted to purchase the Texas Bungalow Hotel & Suites on Burnet Road in North Austin.
The price for the 3 year old, 65 room hotel is expected to be nearly $ 7 million. After the renovation, around 60 permanent supporting housing units should be offered to get people off the streets and accommodate them.
DOWNLOAD THE FOX 7 AUSTIN NEWS APP
The community is responding to the council’s plan to buy hotels for the homeless
People in the area say they have no idea this is a work in progress.
SIGN UP FOR FOX 7 AUSTIN E-MAIL ALARMS
“My first reaction is that it will probably clean up the freeways, make the city look a little better, fewer people sleeping on the side of the road and all that,” said Braylon Cannon, who lives at the Olivine, a gated apartment complex near the hotel.
He thinks it is a good idea to have the shelter in such a quiet area. “I think so far away, it’s like stretching [the homeless population] out of them and try to pull them out of downtown, “he said.
RELATED: Austin City Council Approves Purchase of Homeless Shelter Hotel
Cannon’s neighbor, Sophia Yandell, has similar feelings and says, “I think it’s wonderful that homelessness has gotten really bad in Austin. So it’s great to see more resources.”
It is estimated that over 10,000 people in Austin have access to homeless services each year, according to the nonprofit Caritas.
RELATED: Community Responds to Council Plan to Buy Hotels for the Homeless
Austin City Council approves the purchase of a hotel for homeless shelters
City council members approved the purchase of a hotel in District 7 but decided to postpone the vote on the second hotel in District 6.
“You can’t just solve [the city’s homeless crisis] In one simple step, I think this is a great step in the right direction, but there is so much more that needs to be done, “said Yandell.
RELATED: City Council Finds Hotels For The Homeless In Austin
On Wednesday, voting was postponed for another hotel, Candlewood Suites on Pecan Park Boulevard in District 6. Councilor Mackenzie Kelly said she wanted to speak to her constituents in the area before things move forward.
An Austin city spokesman posted a statement regarding the purchase, saying:
“The cost of the hotel on Burnet Road, North Austin will be funded from the Housing & Planning Department’s 2018 general notes. In the FY21 budget, the city council approved the reinvestment of $ 6.5 million from the Austin’s budget Police Department to Austin public health budget is intended to be used for permanent supportive housing and / or other homelessness support services. This is a priority for the city for public safety Services related to homelessness used purchase of this hotel being converted into permanent residential areas for people with chronic homelessness. “