Anchorage Assembly proposes ordinances that would expand where homeless shelters can be located, require licenses

Old Alaska Club on East Tudor Road
Old Alaska Club on East Tudor Road
Updated: Jun. 1, 2021 at 10:27 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - After putting a similar ordinance on hold last year, the Anchorage Assembly is once again considering a changing its land use code to would expand where homeless shelters can be located within the city.

A town hall meeting was held Tuesday night at the Dena’ina Center where residents voiced their concerns. A second town hall will be held from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday, also at the Dena’ina Center.

The proposed ordinance is paired with another ordinance that would add a licensing requirement for homeless shelters.

It would also amend land use code to allow shelters in areas zoned as business districts.

“There are a handful, there are like 200 some vagrants, and that’s the people we have to deal with,” said one concerned resident. “Pushing them into the neighborhoods is only gonna spread it, and it’s gonna make it worse for all of us.”

“We ask nothing of you. Only let us keep succeeding and supporting those that want and need (shelter) 365 days a year,” said another concerned resident.

Currently, Bean’s Cafe, one of Anchorage’s largest homeless shelters, is being housed at the Sullivan Arena until September.

The city is also in negotiations to buy the former Alaska Club building in Midtown to turn it into a new homeless shelter.

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