Williamson County sues City of Austin over Candlewood Suites hotel

Williamson County has filed suit against the City of Austin to prevent the use of the former Candlewood Suites hotel as housing for the homeless.

The lawsuit, according to the county, seeks a temporary restraining order and a temporary and permanent injunction against the nonprofit created by the city, AHFC Pecan Park PSH, which would stop them from creating homeless housing at the location in violation of restrictions for the intended use of that property.

The City of Austin purchased the hotel in August after reclassifying the site as a location for women who are victims of domestic abuse.

The Commissioners Court has engaged legal counsel to advise the Court on how best to assist the County Attorney’s Office and local citizens with opposing the City’s plans as well as identified and funded a special prosecutor to assist.

"The City of Austin continues to show complete and utter disregard for the law, its neighbors, its citizens and community leaders as it barrels recklessly ahead with its plans for the permanent housing of the homeless at this location in Williamson County. The actions by the City of Austin have left no other options than to pursue legal action," said Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell. "Taking this action is necessary in order to protect Williamson County’s tax-paying, law-abiding citizens to whom the City of Austin has turned a deaf ear to and trampled on."


Last August, the Court voted to file a lawsuit against the City over the $9 million purchase of the 83-room hotel, which is located on Pecan Park Boulevard in the Williamson County part of Austin.

Last month, the Austin City Council authorized negotiating a one-year contract with Family Eldercare to fund renovations at the hotel. Earlier that month, it was discovered that people had been camping in the vacant hotel and had vandalized it. City council is expected to discuss the contract again during next month’s meeting.