March 1, 2024


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San Antonio Town Council approves lease of downtown resort as homeless shelter

SAN ANTONIO – The Metropolis of San Antonio will lease a downtown resort to use as a small-barrier shelter for people today experiencing serious homelessness.

The city council voted 10-1 on Thursday to makes use of CARES Act cash to pay out $1.2 million to lease the Times Inn on East Houston Street, around IH-37, and yet another $1.7 million for SAMMinistries to run it. District 10 Councilman Clayton Perry was the lone vote in opposition to it.

The lease begins July 1.

SAMMinistries President and CEO Nikisha Baker states the 50-area hotel will be a “housing-focused” shelter. About 45 of the rooms will be utilised for housing. There will also be companies like mental health and fitness counseling, relationship to substance abuse therapy, ID recovery expert services, work help and peer assist.

The city and SAMMinistries assume about 250 persons to move by means of the hotel about the program of the 12 months, and about 40% to end up in long lasting housing.

“Our program is that people will keep with us for 90 to 120 times. And in that time period of time, we’re performing with them to get better ID, to get the documents that they require to get on to that coordinated entry record for permanent housing alternatives, and then relocating them through that pipeline,” Baker said.


Individuals will be referred to the resort by avenue outreach groups. The “low-barrier” for entry means folks will not have to have to have an ID or be sober to remain there. They cannot drink or use medicines on the home, nor will they get kicked out for not engaging in software companies.

Baker said registered sex offenders could also get services.

“The proximity of the lodge was intended with that in head, so that we didn’t exclude a specific population of the homeless folks that we want to provide there,” Baker mentioned.

The location is surrounded by the highway and other hotels. The dual director of revenue at the nearby SpringHill Suites by Marriott Alamo Plaza/Convention Center, Sarah Pegues, explained their aim is preserving their company at ease and harmless. They sense associates of the local community should have a space to do the exact same.

“We’re trusting that the administration at the new facility will do a good career of retaining that in line by keeping everyone in the local community and encompassing areas protected and at ease,” Pegues said.


The metropolis has by now been leasing room at two other inns downtown — a person to assistance with potential at Haven for Hope in the course of the pandemic and a block of rooms at another for COVID-19 isolation.

The latter lodge is also the place SAMMinistries has been jogging a scaled-down pilot method considering the fact that April of what they strategy to do at Times Inn in a handful of rooms.

George Hernandez and Magda Rodriguez are collaborating in the pilot and praise SAMMinistries work. The pair had been living in a ditch, but now, remaining in the resort, Rodriguez has been able to get a career, and Hernandez is functioning on obtaining his ID — a common challenge for lots of folks encountering homelessness.

“We have a far more beneficial outlook on the long term, and I’m delighted for that. And I explained to her, ‘now we get married, for actual,’” Hernandez reported, standing future to a beaming Rodriguez.

Perry, who was the only council member to vote towards the strategy, questioned how efficiently the city was presently employing its funds to assistance the homeless populace. He also took exception to the system that introduced the situation forward, noting that it didn’t go via a committee.


Other council associates echoed his considerations about a lack of input. Even so, they ended up voting for the lease and running settlement.

“I want to make absolutely sure that we do have a far more thorough general public input approach in the upcoming,” explained Mario Bravo, the new District 1 councilman. “At the very same time, there are many folks who are living on the road ideal now who really do not have time for a new council member to appear in and say, ‘You know, I’m listed here to just jam up the gears and gradual down the method. And we’re likely to have a prolonged and thorough critique just before we feel about it right before we decide how to go ahead.’ I’m likely to trust that that city team have been carrying out this for a even though and are generating great conclusions for us.”

Town Supervisor Erik Walsh explained to council associates the city has been discussing resorts “for the last six months at a range of different council briefings,” particularly the likelihood of purchasing one particular. Even so, he claimed, they’ve witnessed other towns stumble by dashing to acquire a constructing and then figure out who will work it.


“We assume this employees choice, which has been worked on for some time — and a number of of council associates pointed out — is a great test pilot for the following year to likely see what problems we may have, or the operator may well have, how it may perhaps healthy into a potential bond program,” Walsh explained.

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