SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The City Council's Land Use and Housing Committee passed a contingency plan today in case a permanent shelter for the homeless under construction in downtown San Diego isn't ready in time for the onset of cold winter weather.
Renovation work began at the beginning of the year on the Connections Housing project at the 86-year-old World Trade Center building at 1250 Sixth Ave., but it is doubtful the site will be ready by Dec. 1, according to Richard Gentry, who heads the San Diego Housing Commission.
When the work started, city officials said they hoped it would be done by early November.
The City Council wants a permanent shelter to avoid the annual scramble for a temporary homeless shelter site for the winter months, which always brought heated opposition from neighbors of proposed locations.
"I'd be surprised if we didn't need a (temporary) shelter this year," Gentry told the committee members.
Commission staff said they've targeted Sept. 1 to make a decision on whether the renovation project at the World Trade Center site has progressed enough to guarantee a timely opening. Otherwise, they plan to erect a large tent at the same location of last winter's shelter, a city-owned lot at 16th Street and Newton Avenue in Barrio Logan.
Gentry said the winter shelter usually opens before Thanksgiving. At the request of Councilman David Alvarez, he said commission staff would look into whether a second permanent shelter was necessary and feasible.
Once Connections Housing is completed, it will have 134 beds for interim housing for the homeless, 16 beds for those with special needs and 73 units of permanent housing, as well as a health clinic and space for social service agencies that provide mental health care and substance abuse counseling.
THIS IS AN UPDATE TO THE PREVIOUS STORY BELOW.
SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The city of San Diego's planned permanent homeless shelter might not be ready in time for the onset of cold winter weather, so a contingency plan will be presented to the City Council's Land Use and Housing Committee Wednesday.
The plan includes a temporary winter shelter of the sort city officials hoped would no longer be necessary. The Connections Housing project, at 1250 Sixth Ave. was approved, in part, to avoid the annual scramble for a temporary shelter site, which always brought heated opposition from neighbors of proposed locations.
Construction crews have been renovating the 86-year-old World Trade Center building since the beginning of the year with an eye toward completion by early November. However, the target date for completion is now Dec. 1, and the building might not be ready for use as a permanent shelter until the end of 2012, said Maria Velasquez of the San Diego Housing Commission.
The contingency plan calls for the Housing Commission to determine by Sept. 1 whether Connections Housing will be ready by the target date and, if not, seek funding for the usual tent shelter.
If the temporary shelter is needed again, the commission proposes to place it on a city-owned lot at 16th Street and Newton Avenue in Barrio Logan. Last winter's shelter was also located there.
Once Connections Housing is completed, it will have 134 beds for interim housing for the homeless, 16 beds for those with special needs and 73 units of permanent housing. It will also give space to social service agencies that provide mental health care, substance abuse counseling, and a health clinic.
The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight Friday, which prompted the closure of many federal operations, such as national parks and monuments and that included the shutdown of Cabrillo National Monument.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College. The two marches were held in conjunction with other marches across the country.
Chilly temperatures and scattered showers started the weekend. Temperatures at the coast and inland communities hovered around 60 degrees with some areas of San Diego County receiving rain during the morning hours.
A transient accused of fatally stabbing a man after they got into an argument near a 7-Eleven store in Poway pleaded not guilty Friday to a murder charge.
Coastal rail closures could complicate the commute for the thousands of people expected at Women's Marches set for downtown San Diego and San Marcos Saturday, though additional transit options are being made available.
A man arrested in the doctor's lounge at Sharp Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa after claiming to be an anesthesiologist pleaded not guilty Friday to a felony charge of treating the sick without a certificate.
People who bought new homes in Otay Ranch's Village of Escaya can start moving in Friday - later than planned but after the developer took steps to address methane found at the site.
Recent assaults by tactical teams on prototypes of President Donald Trump’s proposed wall with Mexico found their imposing heights should stop border crossers, The Associated Press has learned, a finding that’s likely to please security hawks but raise concerns about costs and environmental damage.
Two of the region's largest federal enterprises, military bases and border patrol, are unlikely to face major disruptions in the event of a looming government shutdown that experts say likely is to occur at midnight.