Temporary homeless shelters worry some residents

Back on Aug. 15., the city announced a month long initiative to fight homelessness. It included a plan to limit meals to certain people seeking shelter.

“Limiting the meal to people who are already engaged, might be a motivation to the people who aren't yet engaged,” said Jo Kathryn Quinn, executive director at Caritas of Austin, back on Aug. 9.

Now the city is considering more options to help ease some of the overflow downtown when the arch fills up. In a memo from Austin Parks and Recreation, they identified six buildings fit to use as temporary shelters:
-Austin Recreation Center,
-Gus Garcia Recreatin  Center,
-Northwest Recraetion Center,
-Parque Zaragoza
-South Austin Recreation Center
-Givens Recreation Center

“We can have a place to put someone temporarily, that's fine, but a recreation center to put the homeless, it doesn't really fit,” said Leroy Sewer, Austin resident.

Sewer frequents Givens Park and thinks bringing some from the homeless population there wouldn't mix well

“I think it would deteriorate the east side,” said Sewer.

He says he's not worried about those seeking shelter, but others whose intentions are unknown.

“You have folks down there who are not really trying to get well. You may have mentally ill folks who need to be in a separate institution, you see. You have folks who are addicts of whatever,” said Sewer.

These places were picked based on criteria such as building sustainability, socio-economics, and revenue impacts. Austin Parks and Recreation says nothing is set in stone, and they have more talks and need to analyze before making final decisions.