Carrick home could be converted into homeless shelter

A home along a stretch of Brownsville Road in Carrick could eventually be turned into a homeless shelter. And neighbors say they don’t want it.

“We don’t need any more excitement in Carrick than we already have,” said Karen Gallagher, who lives in Carrick.

When some Carrick residents, like Gallagher, hear about the proposed homeless shelter, they aren’t holding back about their concerns.

“Drugs, more drugs than we already have. More issues than we already have,” Gallagher said.

The county has listed a request for proposal for a 13-person homeless shelter that would operate in this large home off of Brownsville Road.

It’s right in the middle of homes, apartments, and small businesses.

“These are people who they think can succeed. Not all will succeed but they need more of a place of their own and better environment,” said City Councilman Anthony Coghill.

Coghill was looped in on the proposal after his constituents reached out with worries.

“I think people get skittish when they hear a shelter,” Coghill said. “We know the problems down here at Smithfield Street, even at Second Avenue Commons, which is a great facility, but there are still issues that come with that.”

He met with county leaders to learn more about the shelter and found out that it would be geared toward the homeless in Carrick. And it would be considered “transitional housing” to help people assimilate into everyday life.

“We do have 60 or so identified homeless people that need to find a new facility, so that was important to me that it was serving the people of Carrick,” Coghill said.

Coghill is touring a similar shelter in Homewood, then will host a series of community meetings for Carrick residents.

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