Denver to spend an additional $4.5M on family homeless hotel



(The Center Square) – The city of Denver is expected to approve $4.5 million as part of a larger $27.4 million project for the construction of 60 non-congregate shelter units at the Theodora Family Hotel.

The city is expected to approve the plans at the City Council meeting on Wednesday, allowing the Volunteers of America Colorado to partner with the city and county of Denver to build a five-story, 60-unit hotel known as the Theodora Family Hotel to replace the current motel according to documents.

VOAC has provided services in Denver since 1896 and currently operates three shelters, two transitional and five rapid rehousing programs, a homeless prevention program, a resource center for clothing and food, a veteran drop-in center, and 10 housing communities.

The Theodora Family Hotel project’s total development cost is $27.4 million. It will be partially funded by the 2021 Rise Denver General Obligation Bond program, which invests $38.6 million in housing and shelter, including $30 million for shelter facility acquisition and improvements.

The first resolution request is seeking approval for funding and assignment agreement between the city and county of Denver and the Volunteers of America to begin construction at the Theodora Hotel in an amount not exceeding $13.2 million from the taxable Rise funds.

The second resolution request will be seeking approval for an additional $4.5 million from the community developmental block grant to provide the majority of the capital stack or to build the fifth floor of the building in the future.

Denver is one of many cities across the U.S. spending millions on hotels to help those experiencing homelessness, as previously reported by The Center Square.

The 2023 point in time survey conducted on Jan. 30, 2023, shows the total number of people experiencing homelessness is 9,065, with an increase of 31.7% since 2022. 2,101 of the people experiencing homelessness were families.

The new hotel will provide a maximum occupancy of 170 residents. It will offer shelter to families with minor children, veterans, and their families while offering assistance with basic needs, crisis intervention, case management, and group or individual education.

The new hotel will offer beds, living areas with a TV, tables and chairs, closets and/or dressers, kitchens with microwaves and under-counter refrigerators, and bathrooms with tubs and open shelving.

The contract will be terminated at the completion of the project.

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