Published November 30 2016
Also, Eastgate study approved
A large crowd turned out Monday night for a City Council update on the Eastside men's shelter and supportive housing project proposed at 14350 Eastgate Way in Bellevue. Through the presentation, staff responded in part to requests from area residents for more detailed information on a number of topics including community need, shelter operations and public safety concerns.
Preliminary vision of shelter and supportive housing
Addressing public safety questions, Bellevue Police reviewed crime data related to the previous temporary location of the men's winter shelter in BelRed. Statistics from 2013-16 showed the presence of the shelter did not appear to impact the violent crime rate. Although property crime rates as a whole followed citywide trends, warrant and trespass arrests were higher in the area. Police also noted that it was reasonable to expect an increase in calls for service.
Since 2008, the city has partnered with Congregations for the Homeless to offer shelters to those in need. The shelter has been located at interim locations in several neighborhoods over the years. Because of the instability created by frequent moves and the increasing community demand, the council made locating a permanent facility one of its 2016 priorities. On Aug. 1, the city announced a partnership with King County, CFH and Imagine Housing to study the county-owned property in Eastgate. A robust community outreach followed, with staff organizing a number of stakeholder briefings and two well-attended community meetings.
In the first quarter of 2017, staff will provide another project update to the council. Then, at a later meeting, councilmembers will consider whether to move forward on the proposed shelter location. If the Eastgate site is selected, staff has recommended the formation of a community advisory group. In addition, the earliest the permanent shelter, day center and supportive housing would open is toward the end of 2019 if the council moves forward with this particular site.
More information on Bellevue's approach to ending homelessness in addition to background on the proposed men's shelter and supportive housing project is available on homelessness in Bellevue. Materials from Monday's presentation are available.
Eastgate transportation study
Earlier in the meeting, the council unanimously agreed to direct staff and the Transportation Commission to work on a traffic study for the 150th Avenue Southeast corridor in Eastgate. The analysis will identify potential cost-effective improvements that can be implemented in the near to mid-term.
Under consideration is whether a portion of the transportation, neighborhood safety, connectivity and congestion improvements ballot measure, approved by voters in November, can be used for the projects. The commission will finalize ideas and report back to the council next year.