Updated March 27, 1:41 p.m.
City Council members have proposed three new sites for homeless shelters.
Councilman Jay Schenirer says one shelter site would be near Alhambra Boulevard and Highway 50, where several homeless campers has been moving from underpass to underpass for more than a year.
The site, which is owned by CalTrans near X Street, is a grassy field that would be paved over. “That would be a site for a sprung tent. We could put 100 beds there," Schenirer said of the triage shelter that would be built on the location.
A vote on the location would go to council in the coming months, and that would be the second proposed homeless shelter in Schenirer’s district; the other is a 21-acre parking lot on Florin Road, which is owned by Sacramento Regional Transit.
Council memeber Jeff Harris proposed a site at Cal Expo for the city’s third shelter. The council voted in favor of the location Tuesday, approving $3.8 million in state and local funding for the site. This includes an increase in the number of Homeless Services Division staff by four.
Harris says the city’s first shelter, north of the American River near Del Paso Boulevard, has provided a roadmap to future success.
"We've learned from [that location] how to manage a shelter and how to do triage and how to cause no harm to the surrounding community,” Harris said. “In fact, things improved on Del Paso and the Woodlake area as a result of the shelter, because we allocated resources for a special impact team in the area.”
Cheri and Joshua, a homeless couple living along the American River parkway who did not offer their last names, say they're excited at the prospect of shelter near Cal Expo.
"That would be great. That would be fabulous, because ... showers. We haven't showered. You've got showers. You've got food," Cheri said.
The Cal Expo site is near Ethan Way, east of the bike trail’s entrance and across from an RV park.
James Stough is staying at the RV park and says the triage shelter is needed. “It’s a great thing for this area,” he said. “They come out here now and they go camp out in the woods and the rangers have to watch them to make sure they’re OK.”
Mayor Darrell Steinberg said he expected an announcement of three locations at the April 16 meeting.