Jacksonville Main Street has concerns about the location of a temporary homeless shelter in the downtown area. In emails obtained by WLDS News over the weekend, Jacksonville Main Street Executive Director Judy Tighe says Jacksonville Main Street is attempting to work with Jacksonville Police Chaplain Alan Bradish to find an alternate location for the temporary homeless shelter. Tighe says that Jacksonville Main Street would not be able to support the shelter if all of the businesses in the downtown area weren’t on board with the idea. Bradish alerted the Jacksonville City Council last Monday night that he had worked out a verbal agreement with the owners of the former Krush Time/ Times Theater location on East State Street.
Tighe says in the emails that the homeless shelter near the downtown business district may possibly bring about a negative perception that may further hurt business in the area, already hurting due to COVID-19 restrictions and shutdowns. Tighe says that Bradish and the Jacksonville City Council are still open to suggestions and ideas for the proposed temporary shelter at this time. Tighe says that a temporary rezoning of the area is set to happen soon by vote of the City Council.
Tighe has created an open forum for business owners in the downtown area to voice concerns and ask questions on the Krush Time location. Bradish is also expected to attend and provide further information. The meeting is set to take place Monday afternoon at 3PM at Hamilton’s Ballroom. The meeting is expected to last approximately 1 hour. Tighe says that business owners who cannot attend should email or call her as soon as possible with their questions or concerns. To send along questions, call Tighe tomorrow at 217-245-6884.
Tighe says that she hopes a civil conversation can be had to ensure that helping businesses and neighbors can all happen, and that ideas can be presented to provide a solution to an extremely difficult situation.