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Neighbors unsettled over Avenues hostel

Neighbors unsettled over Avenues hostel



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SALT LAKE CITY -- Neighbors of a hostel in the Avenues are upset about who is staying there.

It's intended for travelers, but neighbors say more often it is becoming home for parolees and transients.

Next-door neighbor Ezra Jones tells the Salt Lake Tribune somebody backed into his house with a car once, his bike has been stolen and he has even had a guest of the Avenues Hostel at 107 F Street walk into his home.

Another woman, who did not want to be identified because she says she has been threatened in the past, says she doesn't understand why this has to be in her neighborhood.

"I realize they need a place to live, but does it have to be here in the Avenues?" she asked. "We find that it's difficult to let our grandchildren or our little people come out and play because of the men that are sitting on the walls and on the steps."

Police have responded to roughly 150 calls to the Avenues Hostel since January of last year.

The owner of the hostel tells the Salt Lake Tribune these are good people who stay there. While he acknowledges some of his visitors are fresh out of jail or prison, he says he's not going to turn them away with his international business down right now. He does say he's considering it. He also has put up security cameras around the building.

A Department of Corrections spokesperson tells the Tribune parolees frequent hostels around the valley.

E-mail: aadams@ksl.com

Andrew Adams

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