I wrote about this Jan. 25th — Rural CAP’s proposed residential center for homeless alcoholics in an existing hotel building in Fairview was generating some fierce opposition.
Since then, the municipal Assembly has been removing some roadblocks, and plans for Karluk Manor seem to be moving ahead.
If another facility for drunks is such a great deal for Fairview, maybe it would sell in an East Anchorage or Midtown or Hillside neighborhood. Right?
Jenkins’ faux compassion for the much-maligned Fairview still makes a point [one I have noted serveral times]: social services tend to congregate in places in Anchorage where their clients are located, and where real estate prices are lowest. The vicious cycle created makes it doubly difficult to distribute these services in locations citywide.
It’s both a financial and attitudinal vexing problem. People have to stop believing Mt. View and Fairview [and to a lesser extent, Muldoon and Spenard] are dangerous and undesirable locations, and begin to take on an active role in a counterpunch, i.e. try [in any of dozens of different ways] to make the neighborhood famous for a better reason.
Not an easy task, and results may take decades to materialize.
The problem with fanning the flames of NIMBY-ism in order to derail Karluk Manor, is that it is a promising community structure, based on a model that has worked well elsewhere, and should be given a chance to succeed. I think that, though the situation Jenkins laments should be addressed in the future, the potential for Rural CAP to make real progress in rehabilitation of chronic street alcoholics trumps downside for the neighbors in this instance.