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San Diego in negotiations over largest-ever homeless shelter

San Diego in negotiations over largest-ever homeless shelter
Posted at 8:39 PM, Jun 10, 2024

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — 'Rushed, costly and inadequate.' Those are a few words Ed Moore uses to describe the City of San Diego's plan for a 1000-bed homeless shelter in a warehouse at Kettner and Vine.

“It just seems conceptually wrong from the get-go,” Moore said.

He has lived in this charming home in the Middletown neighborhood for 30 years. It is a six-minute walk from the proposed shelter and even closer to a Shell gas station. Moore worries it could become a hangout spot for those staying at the shelter.

“You’re in a cot with people all around you; you're going to want to take a walk; this is where you’re going to come," Moore said. "Right inside here in the mini-mart, serving single cans of beer.”

On Monday, the City Council met in a closed session to discuss a 30-year lease for the warehouse. Mayor Todd Gloria's office said the idea is to offer employment assistance, mental health and substance use services, transportation at the shelter and a place to stay.

Last week, following a press conference, the Mayor spoke about that vision.

“How you design it can make it a much more intimate, and it could be an environment that people can be proud of,” Gloria said.

His office estimates it will cost $30 million annually to operate. The city says there would also be an initial $18 million for renovations.

“As opposed to one shelter for 1,000, why don’t we do 10 with 100 each," Moore said. "Something humane, something we can manage, and something that isn’t so impactful on one neighborhood in particular.”

Gloria has included this shelter in his budget proposal for homeless solutions. He says it’s necessary to get people out of unsafe encampments, but an agreement still hasn't been finalized.