On Tuesday, the Mountain View hotel came one step closer to being converted into permanent housing, despite objections from critics fearing it would simply become a haven for the homeless.
If approved by the Santa Clara County Supervisory Board in November, Crestview, a 61-room hotel located near El Camino Real in Mountain View, near the Sunnyvale border, will be acquired by Santa Clara County for $ 16.6 million from Project Homekey tools. … As part of a project promoted by Governor Gavin Newsom, Homekey converted more than 1,600 hotels, apartments and other housing units in the Bay Area into permanent housing last year. In September, the state committed an additional $ 2.75 billion to cities, counties and nonprofits for upcoming projects.
After a lengthy public comment period with 49 supporters and opponents of the Mountain View project, five leaders voted unanimously on Tuesday to give the county executive authority to apply for Homekey funds. Although the decision to move was not final – it will be made on November 2 – none of the leaders raised any serious objections to the project.
Critics of the proposal, while recognizing the common problem of homelessness in the region, raised concerns about safety and transparency and described the project as turning Crestview into a “homeless shelter”.
But supervisor Mike Wasserman dismissed that description, explaining that it would be a permanent one-year-lease housing where residents pay rent. He also asked a representative of the county housing department to explain the several security levels that applicants to the Mountain View site would have to go through to get a seat, including a criminal background check.
“I think there is a real misunderstanding based only on the repetitiveness of the messages that were read today,” Wasserman said, referring to some public concern about the project. He also said criticism of converting the site to permanent housing was “duplicate”, calling some of them “just not true.”
Observer Joseph Simitian, in whose district The Crestview is located, said he was sympathetic to complaints about the lack of public awareness of the proposal. He noted that despite the numerous news articles published about the project and previous public discussions on the matter, the outreach efforts were “tough.”
“We still hear from a lot of people that they didn’t feel fully informed or interested in the upcoming development,” he said. “And I believe them, just to be clear. This is a mystery that we will have to solve at some point. “
On October 27, the District Auxiliary Housing Authority will hold a public comment on the construction project.
Proponents of the project said the hotel’s location next to several bus routes would be convenient for potential residents. Others pointed to the high cost of housing in the area. Aaron Eckhouse, who works for a nonprofit housing construction in Sacramento, called the project “a mistake counties missed.”
The proposal has been a source of controversy among community members for nearly a year. In January, Mountain View City Council continued to buy the site, including $ 3.7 million from its own coffers for renovations. There were petitions both for and against the project in the disassembly, and hundreds signed up for both.