Residents start anti-hostel campaign

RESIDENTS have vowed to fight plans to house a hostel for 40 homeless men in a West End street.

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Around 95 people attended a protest meeting last night at Maryhill Central Halls aimed at taking their campaign fight forward.

The city council intends to move elderly residents from the care home in Burnbank Avenue, in the Woodside area, to new accommodation in Possilpark.

They say the hostel will be properly supervised by staff with strong links to police and community safety services.

But residents fear housing such a high number of men with complex problems including addictions could create a "no-go" zone in an area heavily populated by the elderly and families with young children.

Resident claim their opposition has the support of the police who are said to have told one female resident they are regularly called out to similar units of that size in the city. She claims the officer encouraged her to "fight the plans."

Steven Turner, who lives in Burnbank Gardens, said: "We are absolutely opposed to the proposals. It's not about scaling the project down. We want to ensure it doesn't happen."

Another resident, said: "This is not about nimbyism. If it was a smaller unit...but 40 men with complex needs. It's not good for them to be housed together and it's not good for us."

If the plan goes ahead, the homeless hostel could be up and running by October.

The campaign group is planning to extend their reach to people living in surrounding areas including St George's Cross, Great Western Road and West Princes Street.

One campaigner said: "The council has a homeless agenda to fulfil. I don't think they care about what people are thinking."

The council plans to hold a meeting with residents in the next couple of weeks.

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