Amazon Building Now Open To Homeless Families | KUOW News and Information

Amazon Building Now Open To Homeless Families

Apr 17, 2016

Homeless families in Seattle will start moving into a building owned by Amazon on Monday.

The old downtown hotel is a plush space for a shelter, according to the nonprofit that will run it.

Amazon plans to build offices on the site in one year, but until then it has offered it for free to Mary's Place to run a shelter. It's located at 2213 Eighth Avenue.

That's great news to the nonprofit's Executive Director Marty Hartman who said they were "over the moon."

"We kind of had to pinch ourselves," Hartman said.

Mary's Place has a history of turning empty buildings into shelter sites.

Hartman says the former Travelodge hotel is exciting because people get a mix of personal and community space.

"There are 63 beautiful rooms where families can come in," he said. "We have community space where we can all eat together. There's a great kids club room that's being built out by our partners at Amazon for toys, and great play time, computer space to maybe do some homework."

The City of Seattle will help pay for the shelter.

Mayor Ed Murray says this is a good example of how the private sector can help with Seattle's homeless crisis.

Hartman has reached out to notify businesses in the neighborhood and says people are glad the building is going to a good use.

Mary's Place focuses on helping people find permanent housing and jobs.