SALT LAKE CITY — City leaders took another step toward building the new homeless resource centers meant to replace the troubled downtown shelter once it shutters in 2019.
The Salt Lake City Council Tuesday night unanimously approved an ordinance setting requirements the future homeless resource centers must comply with in order to operate within the city.
The new ordinance allows the centers to operate under a conditional use permit as long as the centers' operators abide by the certain requirements, among which is a maximum capacity of 200, including overflow but not staff.
Two, 200-bed homeless resource centers are planned to be built in Salt Lake City, while the third, 300-bed facility will be built in South Salt Lake.
The Road Home's nearly 1,100-bed homeless shelter is slated to shut its doors in July 2019, while the new resource centers are expected to open in June 2019, owned by the nonprofit Shelter the Homeless Inc.
The new ordinance requires the centers to maintain continuous on-site security and emergency services, and ensure any areas for queuing take place "within the footprint of the principal building and will not occur on any public street or sidewalk."
It also requires a "decorative masonry wall" at a minimum of 6 feet high to border the facility, with a fence no taller than 3 feet high at the front property line.
The centers have a security and operation plan approved by the Salt Lake City Police Department and Community and Neighborhoods Department, and a community relations and complaint response program that "identifies specific strategies and methods designed to maintain the premises in a clean and orderly condition," according to the ordinance.
The program shall also "minimize potential conflicts with the owners/operators and uses of neighboring property and prohibit unlawful behavior by occupants" of the homeless center, the ordinance states.
The ordinance says the complaint response program shall include a representative of the homeless resource center who will meet with neighbors "upon request to resolve any neighborhood complaints regarding operation of the center," along with a 24-hour hotline for complaints.
The ordinance also requires quarterly meetings with a "community coordinating group" that will be open to the public to address neighborhood concerns.4 comments on this story
The six-member group will include representatives from the homeless center, representatives from a business; a resident and a school located within a quarter-mile of the site; a representative from the community council whose boundary encompasses the site; and an individual who has previously received or is currently receiving services from the homeless center, the ordinance states.
The ordinance also requires a provision stating that any trash strewn on the premises of the centers be collected by 6 a.m. the following day.
The City Council approved the ordinance with no discussion on Tuesday, but its vote came after two public hearings in September and October.