New homeless shelter in NE Portland draws cheers and worry - KPTV - FOX 12

New homeless shelter in NE Portland draws cheers and worry

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Hansen Building located in northeast Portland (KPTV) Hansen Building located in northeast Portland (KPTV)
(KPTV) -

The city of Portland and Multnomah County have opened a new homeless shelter. 

On Friday, the Hansen Building, which was formally the Multnomah County Sheriff’s, opened as a shelter. The building is located at the corner of Northeast Glisan St. and Northeast 122nd Ave.

Inside 200 beds are set up to house the homeless. Those living at the shelter will have access to social services, and drug and alcohol programs.

William Knowle is applauding the idea. He was recently staying at a downtown shelter that has closed.

Knowle said he’s been homeless for 10 days after moving back to the Northwest from Little Rock, Arkansas. 

“I want to get here, into an apartment and working, I want to do that in 60 days,” Knowle said.

He’s one of several who moved into the new shelter Friday night. Knowle is excited for the services that will be offered and is hopeful they will help him get back on his feet. 

“Up here I think we can concentrate more on ourselves and work on things that we need to work on,” Knowle said.

Not everyone is thrilled the shelter has opened.

Navella Crane lives a few blocks away and says she and her neighbors are upset.

“It’s more than frustrating,” Crane said. “I can’t say what it is.”

She’s worried about an increase in crime and her property value dropping.

“That’s my concern, I own this home, I have lived here for 21 years, I have built my home, I have remodeled my home, I have done everything I can do to my home and this is what I get left with,” Crane said.

She adds she feels the city is just dumping a growing crisis in her neighborhood.

“What he is doing is taking all the problems from one area and putting them all in another area and that’s what bothers me,” Crane said.

Back at the shelter, the new tenants continued to move in, for those like Knowle he’s hopeful he won’t be here long.

“I would hope that for everybody that it is a transition,” Knowle said. "I mean that is the hope for me and my friends.”

In the end he wants his new neighbors to know him and here his story and simply have a conversation.

“We’re stable people, we don’t want to be in this situation but we are,” Knowle said.

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