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At least five former Lodge of the Rockies residents would be homeless as of Sunday morning without a proverbial Hail Mary pass from the community in the form of rentals and monetary …
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At least five former Lodge of the Rockies residents would be homeless as of Sunday morning, Jan. 10, without a proverbial Hail Mary pass from the community in the form of rentals and monetary donations.
Lodge of the Rockies, located at 1601 Colorado Blvd. in Idaho Springs, was condemned on Dec. 8 and its 30 residents were given 48 hours' notice to vacate the premises.
The building was deemed unsafe because of hazardous electrical work and other unauthorized modifications, City Administrator Andy Marsh has confirmed.
Despite its status as an inn, all the occupants lived long-term at the lodge. Most of them are elderly and on fixed incomes, county case worker Mary Bernal described.
While a few immediately found alternative living situations, the city and other local partners paid for the rest to stay at local hotels for up to 30 days while they searched for more permanent options.
Since Dec. 10, Bernal said her office and Operation Give Hope, which is operated through the Clear Creek Veterans Coalition, has helped seven residents find and afford homes. Others found their own housing.
However, five people are still in need of help and residents are supposed to check out of the hotels Sunday morning, Jan. 10.
"I'm at the end (of the 30 days) here, and it's becoming scary for these five people," she said. " ... They work hard and pay their bills. A few of them are willing to become roommates."
Bernal said the biggest need is homes and money, which would be used for the residents' deposits and other housing-related costs. However, if there are landlords who would be willing to forego deposits, rush applications or make some other kind of allowances, Bernal said that would be appreciated also.
Even if they can't find housing within the next few days, monetary donations could help the residents stay at the hotels until they do, she explained.
While there's still a need, Bernal expressed her gratitude for those who have already donated to Operation Give Hope, saying those funds went toward other residents' new living situations.
"Thirty days isn't a long enough time to find housing on a fixed income anywhere in the state," she said. "If people can donate to (Operation Give Hope), we can keep them in motels as we continue to look, because we don't want them on the street."
Donations to Operation Give Hope can be dropped off at Idaho Springs City Hall and the Resource Center or mailed to the Clear Creek Veterans Coalition.
To share information about rentals, contact case worker Mary Bernal at 303-670-7542.
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