Controversial plans for a homeless shelter in Glendale will be the focus of a Community Board 5 public hearing scheduled to take place next month at Middle Village’s Christ the King High School.
The session will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 7, at the high school located at 68-02 Metropolitan Ave.
The hearing comes after the Department of Homeless Services confirmed that is not only proceeding with its plan to turn the abandoned factory at 78-16 Cooper Ave. in Glendale into a shelter, but that it will also open a facility for homeless residents in Ridgewood as well.
The event is likely to attract strong opinions and community attendance given the six-year campaign that community organizations and local politicians have waged against the shelter. District Manager Gary Giordano said that the meeting room at Christ the King High School could fit 800 residents comfortably.
Giordano said that the community board chose to hold the hearing solely on the Glendale shelter because he did not want to mix the issues around that facility with the one in Ridgewood. The Glendale facility is expected to open sooner, and Giordano didn’t think that there would be a suitable spot that could accommodate residents from both geographic areas.
The Cooper Avenue site will house 200 single individuals who are currently employed or seeking employment and is expected to open in early 2020. The Ridgewood location, at 1616 Summerfield St., will house 132 families with children and is expected to open late in 2020.
The community board will hold a separate hearing for the Ridgewood shelter at on a date to be disclosed in the future.
“What I’m looking to do and what I think the board is hoping to do is have a calm, respectful public hearing and come up with our own recommendations as far as the plan is with the homeless,” said Giordano, emphasizing that he thought being calm, respectful and thoughtful is critical.