Proposed location of new emergency shelter in Guildford

Proposed location of new emergency shelter in Guildford

Surrey endorses homeless shelter

One councillor is opposed to the idea as it will be across the street from a school and busy park

Surrey is creating a 40-bed emergency homeless shelter on 104 Avenue.

At least one city councillor thinks its a bad idea to locate the shelter across from a school and next to a busy park.

On Monday night, Surrey council endorsed a corporate report recommending the creation of an emergency shelter at 14716 104 Ave.

It’s right beside a RCMP district policing station and a Great Canadian Superstore. It is also across the street from Hjorth Road Elementary School and it is just north of Hjorth Road park.

Surrey Coun. Tom Gill said it’s the right idea, wrong location.

Having worked with social service organizations for the last 25 years, Gill said he’s acutely aware of the need, but insists the city is putting this one in the wrong spot.

“Even when we (city councillors) approve a liquor store, we make sure the liquor store is X amount of meters from a public school,” Gill said.

The shelter will be in an existing two-floor building on 104 Avenue, will be a “low barrier” shelter, for street entrenched homeless.

It will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for six months of the year.

Clients will be served two meals a day.

People will be able to keep the same beds until they no longer need them, and the space will include secure storage for personal belongings.

The facility operations will be fully funded by B.C. Housing and is expected to be up and running by December.