City in Texas plans to buy and renovate old hotel to temporarily house the homeless

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AUSTIN, Tx. (WJW) — The city of Austin is planning to buy and renovate an old hotel to temporarily house the homeless.

According to WFAA, city council members approved the multi-million dollar project on Thursday.

The Ending Community Homeless Coalition (ECHO) is expected to pay for the operations.

“ECHO is going to start working with our partner organizations to figure out referral pathways into projects like this,” said Executive Director, Matt Mollica in an interview. “As you know, 81 units is not going to solve homelessness here in Austin and Travis County. We’re going to have to look at using this as a model and continuing to work to acquire new properties for people to be in.”

Some residents spoke out against the idea and worry it could attract more crime to the area.

“I think crime doesn’t increase because people experiencing homelessness are in your community and the benefits provided in this space will enhance the community and the surrounding community,” Mollica told the news outlet.

ECHO hopes to have people moved into the property by the end of the year.

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