Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Homeless Shelter Attracting Pot Smokers to McDonald's Across the Street

Photo:  The new homeless shelter is the white building in the background.

When you change one thing, you may affect things around it.  

A regular customer at McDonalds at Main & Terminal says there are more "bums" standing around outside now that the new homeless shelter has opened across the street.  They congregate in front of McDonalds a little after 7 p.m., and hang out until shortly before 8 p.m. when the shelter opens.  The customer sometimes ducks outside himself to have a quick cigarette, so he knows who's who out there.

"Are they the ones smoking pot?," I asked.  "Yeah", the customer said.  On two evenings out of the last three, I walked through a cloud of strong pot smoke when going in the front entrance at McDonalds to buy a take-out coffee.  

When Mayor Robertson and his HEAT team turned the empty warehouse across the street from McDonalds into a homeless shelter, they probably thought that because the building was in an industrial area and situated well back from Main St., it wouldn't affect people in the neighborhood.  

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