The Dane County Board of Supervisors recently approved the purchase of land on Madison’s east side for a daytime resource center to serve the homeless population.

The county purchased the building for $1.4 million, and its location will be 1326 E. Washington Ave. The shelter will offer daytime shelter and services to Madison’s homeless community.

The location aligns with specifications from the Homeless Issues Committee and offers a slew of advantages, Supervisor Heidi Wegleitner, District 2, said. The day center is within a mile and a half of the Capitol, located on a bus line and in close proximity to other homeless services, she said.

The center is also large enough to provide a wide variety of desired services. The building is nearly 20,000 square feet, which will allow for multiple showers, laundry machines, quiet areas, offices and group spaces, Wegleitner said. The outdoor space offers parking, as well as an area that could have raised-bed gardens or a courtyard.

Despite the benefits of the location, there are concerns about the effects of the center on the surrounding area, Supervisor Jeff Pertl, District 17, said.

The center will likely serve a large number of individuals, probably around 100 to 200 people per day, Wegleitner said. In order for the day center to provide as many services as possible, it will be important to ensure individuals can get to and from the location easily.

Community members have questioned the transportation system’s role in the day shelter, and how the center will prevent people from queuing up on the sidewalks, Pertl said.

The Tenney Nursery and Parent Center, located just behind the site, has expressed concerns about being so close to the resource center.

“We want to make sure the Tenney Nursery isn’t negatively impacted,” Wegleitner said. “They are an important neighborhood institution, and we don’t want to disrupt their programs.”

Finally, several area businesses have come forward with concerns about the center affecting their business due to large numbers of homeless people congregating in the area, Wegleitner said.

Wegleitner said though these concerns are legitimate, they will be addressed as long as the county works closely alongside all members of the community the project affects. Developing an inclusive plan will help ensure the area is not negatively affected by the day center, Pertl said.

“Some of these questions might be difficult considerations,” Pertl said. “Securing the space was just the first step in the process. There is lots of other planning to be done for the other pieces in the puzzle, and then we have to put it all together.”

The next steps for the center involve acquiring a conditional-use permit from the city, an application which will likely be filed sometime in March 2016. Architecture firm Dorschner Associates has already been selected to help design the renovations, but the selection still requires approval from the county.

The county is also searching for an operator for the facility, Wegleitner said. Though the county will own the site, a nonprofit organization will be in charge of day-to-day operations at the facility. The applications for operator are due Dec. 11, with a final selection approved by the county.