Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams has met with the county Site Evaluation Committee to sift through the pros and cons of nine potential locations for a new homeless shelter in Salt Lake County. He plans to announce his recommendation early Friday.
McAdams says two Draper locations are still on the table, despite opposition from Draper and Bluffdale residents who showed up in the hundreds to Wednesday night’s open house at Draper Park Middle School.
“I keep asking myself who these idiots are that keep coming up with the idea of placing homeless resource centers in affluent neighborhoods in places like Sugar House and Draper,” said Draper resident Michael Barth.
Barth said he couldn’t believe the proposal was made within 24 hours of the final decision. Resident’s threatened to impeach Draper Mayor Troy Walker or block his re-election. They booed the few people who favored the plan, including a homeless man who stood to speak. The mayor ended up withdrawing his offer to host the shelter by the end of the meeting.
McAdams commended Walker for stepping forward. He says public rancor won’t sway the final decision- especially considering none of the recommended sites have been welcomed by communities.
“I think it’s very clear that there is no perfect location,” McAdams said. “Every location has some negatives to it. What I know right now is the status quo is not acceptable. We must make a decision and we must do something.”
Members of the Site Evaluation Committee expressed particular concern Thursday with the site on 3091 South Main Street and the site adjacent to the Oxbow Jail. All of the proposed locations are online at www.homelessfacilitysite.org.