Plans to locate the city’s homeless shelter near Douglas County Jail will face their first hurdle on Monday.
Lawrence-Douglas County Planning Commission will consider approving a special-use permit for the 125-bed shelter at its 6:30 p.m. meeting Monday at City Hall.
Planning staff members are recommending approval of the permit and also are recommending that the permit not be subject to an automatic expiration date. Traditionally, special-use permits must be periodically renewed by the City Commission.
Leaders of the Lawrence Community Shelter had asked that the permit not be subject to such renewals. Planning staff members said that makes sense.
“It is open-ended, but you have to remember that the City Commission can initiate a revocation of the permit at any time,” said Sandra Day, the city planner leading the review. “We’re sure that between all the agencies that work with the shelter and all the neighbors in the area, that there always will be quite a few watchful eyes on the property.”
The shelter is hoping to open a new facility in a warehouse building at 3701 Franklin Park Circle, which is just east of the jail, 3601 E. 25th St. The current shelter at 10th and Kentucky streets would then close.
The proposal has drawn opposition from several neighbors in the area.