Austin hotel bought for $9 million to become a homeless shelter is vandalized: ‘Almost all the doors are broken down’

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The city of Austin bought a Candlewood Suites hotel for $9 million last year with plans to turn it into a homeless shelter, but the building has been vandalized in recent months before needed renovations could take place, City Council member Mackenzie Kelly said at a news conference. Thursday.

“This damage spans all three floors of the building and almost every room,” Kelly said Thursday. “Nearly every door is kicked in. Clothing, personal effects and trash were strewn throughout the property and several televisions were torn from the dry wall and stolen. The entire hotel was stripped of copper. dryers, air conditioning systems and electrical wiring were destroyed.”

The fire department was initially called to the hotel on May 5 after an alarm went off and found people living in the building.

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Candlewood Suites is located in the part of Williamson County northwest of Austin, and city officials have been putting off the purchase from the start.

“It’s just beyond comprehension to me that the city of Austin would buy a homeless hotel, say they’re renovating it, but do nothing with it and then allow the homeless in breaking and using it,” Williamson County Judge Bill Bill said. Gravell said during a hearing in commissioners’ court on Tuesday, according to Fox 7 Austin.

“I’m disappointed in Mayor Steve Adler. I’m disappointed in the City Council and I’m disappointed in the City Manager. They failed to lead and that’s a result of their laziness and stupidity.”

Austin City Council member Mackenzie Kelly tackles vandalism at Candlewood Suites.
(FoxNews)

The City of Austin is now implementing 24-hour security at the hotel to prevent any further damage.

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Next week, the city council is meeting with the non-profit Family Eldercare about the start of renovations to the building, which will eventually be available for residents aged 55 and over who are homeless.

“Criminal activity in Candlewood only harms our town and further delays the achievement of the town’s goal of providing assistance and housing to those in the community who need it most,” said Kelly Thursday.

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