Permanent Homeless Shelter Proposed for Downtown Frederick

Frederick residents voiced their opposition at the public forum

Frederick, MD – A permanent homeless shelter in downtown Frederick was up for discussion on Monday as the Frederick Planning Commission met to discuss the rezoning of the Frederick Action Agency.

The board unanimously voted to recommend the rezoning of 100 S. Market St. to allow the permanent housing of disabled and chronically homeless individuals.

The decision was quickly met with boos from the audience of Frederick residents, some concerned with the affect on local businesses.

“I don’t have a problem with them, I have a problem with them on that location,” Downtown resident and business owner Susan Seymour said.

One resident voiced his concern on community safety.

“I’ve seen people overdose from our living room window,” Downtown resident Brad Hoffman said. “The safety and wellbeing of all citizens and visitors in Downtown Frederick need to be the first priority.”

The FCAA currently operates transitional housing, providing 14 bedrooms, 31 beds, and nine cribs for families and physically or mentally disabled individuals experiencing homelessness. The rezoning would provide 14 or 15 rooms, with four or five of them being larger to accommodate homeless couples.

FCAA Executive Director Mike Spurrier said the rezoning would reduce the amount of homeless people living in the building. from a maximum of 40 to 20.

“At a very minimum, there would be 15 people.” Spurrier said. “Right now, in a single bedroom, there might be a mom and three children.”

The final decision on the rezoning will be decided by the Mayor and the board.

By Timothy Young