Austin City Council to discuss expanding services for homeless, MLS stadium

Austin City Council is voting on and discussing a variety of issues this evening, including a resolution that could identify city sites for a Major League Soccer Team.

AUSTIN - Hundreds are expected to pack the courtyard at Austin City Hall on Thursday in support of bringing a professional soccer team to the city.

Columbus Crew SC has expressed interest in moving to Austin, and Mayor Steve Adler has said public funding for the measure is not an option. However, city council members are expected to consider a resolution that would identify city-owned land - including park land - that could be used to build a stadium during the council's Nov. 9 meeting.

Council members are also expected to vote on a proposal that will make it easier for Mobile Loaves and Fishes to implement its 10-year plan to help the homeless. The council is looking at waiving fees to expand the 27-acre "Community First" village development in northeast Austin. Community First provides affordable and permanent housing to the homeless, and Mobile Loaves and Fishes want to make it bigger so 1,000 new residents can move in.

"I am unaware of anything in this country that is the manifestation of a community-led, community-sponsored, decentralized effort. Like what we're seeing here," Adler said.

The first phase of expansion is scheduled for 2018. The 10-year plan also includes establishing a downtown food commissary. This would give homeless men and women the choice to sell food or drinks instead of panhandling.

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