Wednesday, June 3, 2009

More On Martha's Kitchen Closure

The Temple Daily Telegram did a couple of follow up stories on the City's closing of several major components of Martha's Kitchen homeless shelter. I posted about this yesterday. One of the most interesting stories is here. The part of the story that I find most interesting is this one paragraph right at the end.
Martha’s Kitchen has been a staple on Avenue G for about 25 years. Code enforcement along Avenue G is part of the city’s strategic investment zone initiative, started more than a year ago, to crack down on code violations. Source: Temple Daily Telegram

I always find it interesting that when a city starts an economic development program for a blighted area, one of the first things they try to get rid of are entities like homeless shelters.

This is an interesting conundrum. Are the homeless and their shelter blighting the area or is the shelter just located where most of the homeless are? If the shelter closes has the problem really gone away if we just disburse the homeless where they are less visible? Can we then pat ourselves on the back for a successful redevelopment when we move homeless people from the shelter to some other city or under a bridge somewhere?

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