Scarborough hotel to become homeless shelter

City to buy Comfort Inn to create men's hostel

The Comfort Inn East hotel in Scarborough may soon be transformed into a homeless shelter for some of the most vulnerable men in the city.

The City of Toronto is to buy the Comfort Inn hotel on Kingston Road near Bellamy road as part of a five-year-plan to open as many as 15 new temporary and permanent hostels to ease overcrowding, replace shelters closed due to redevelopment and expand service to the inner suburbs.

By the numbers:
Toronto’s shelter system

4,476
Number of full-time beds in Toronto’s shelter system

50
Number of shelters in Toronto’s
shelter system

16,000
Individuals who have used the shelter
system in 2014

4
Average number of individuals who use
each shelter bed

64
Percentage of beds used by men

35
Percentage of beds used by women

69
Percentage of beds used by adults

19
Percentage of beds used by youth
aged 16 to 24

19
Percentage of beds used by children
under 16

Source: City of Toronto

If city council approves, the hotel would be renovated to serve about 120 homeless seniors, including 60 men from the nearby Birchmount residence, according to Councillor Gary Crawford.

The Birchmount Residence was a former nursing home used by the city since 1999 as a homeless shelter for men over age 55. It is currently in poor condition. The Comfort Inn hotel is about six kilometres east from the Birchmount Residence.  A new renovated shelter owned by the city of Toronto is supposed to potentially provide more privacy and better living conditions for the men.

A public meeting about the renovated shelter is to be held atthe Scarborough Village Recreation Centre on Nov. 17 at 6:30 p.m.