Reno seeks public input on overflow homeless shelter proposal for Sage Street

The City of Reno is looking to build a permanent overflow shelter on Sage Street.

Homelessness in the Truckee Meadows is reaching a tipping point, as Reno's temporary overflow shelter is now starting to overflow.

To remedy that problem, the City of Reno is eyeing a property on Sage Street to build a permanent overflow shelter.

The five-acre parcel is just southwest of the Spaghetti Bowl and north of the Truckee River. City officials say it's still in the conceptual stages, but the facility could be anywhere from 10,000 to 20,000 square feet.

Tuesday night, city staff held a community meeting to hear comments on the proposal. Most comments seemed to support the project.

"This is something that needs to happen yesterday."

"I think that the shelter is a safety net that we need to have as a community in order to care for our neighbors," J.D. Klippenstein, executive director for ACTIONN, said.

The shelter would have a commercial kitchen, food serving area and a kennel for pets. In the long term, the facility could become a men's shelter, city staff said.

Some speakers were opposed to the idea, including a few nearby business owners.

"My thought was that's a bad idea. I mean, if there's redevelopment on 4th Street, why would they be [building a homeless shelter]? Doesn't seem to make sense," one business owner said.

Now, city staff will take the public comments from Tuesday's meeting and turn them into a report to be presented to the city council in early 2018.

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