A PROBLEMATIC Scottish Borders Council-owned temporary homeless facility is set to be closed and put up for sale, it has emerged.

Maxmill Park in Kelso is a site providing homeless accommodation for 14 households.

It comprises four two-bedroomed units, eight one-bedroomed units, and two bedsit units. This includes provision of one disabled access unit.

The facility has provided short-term emergency housing within the Borders since 1994.

But due to reports of anti-social behaviour the facility has been “stigmatised”, members of SBC’s Executive Committee will be informed when they meet on Tuesday (May 14).

A report states that the current facility provides “inferior quality temporary accommodation”.

It is being recommended that the facility is closed and sold and that the resulting shortfall in the need for temporary homeless accommodation be met with the use of registered social landlord (RSL) properties.

The report states: “The site has been used by homelessness services for a significant period, during which a minority of residents have perpetrated anti-social and criminal behaviour, resulting in the facility becoming stigmatised.

“This impacts homeless applicants placed in the facility who are negatively stereotyped.

“The communal-type model of this facility is not considered to be positive practice, with the varying and complex needs of homeless applicants having to be managed carefully.

“The anti-social and criminal behaviour has had an impact on the local community around the site and resulted in several concerns raised by elected members and partner agencies.

“It has been reported by police that they have experienced increased calls to the site to manage anti-social and criminal behaviour impacting on the local community on a cyclical basis.”

The extra cost to the council of utilising RSL properties is estimated at £100,000 a year.

The Maxmill Park site has a sale value of approximately £150k which would provide a one-off capital receipt.

The report adds: “Phased discontinuance of Maxmill Park will mean a shortfall in temporary accommodation provision. It is intended to address that shortfall through RSL provision. If this proves unachievable, this will compel SBC to place homeless households within bed and breakfast or hotel accommodation at the estimated costs of £74,360 per annum.”