ROCHESTER, Minn. - Chief Jim Franklin says there has been a steady increase in aggressive behaviors in the skyways. He says businesses in that area have even had to create an escort program for employees scared to walk to their cars.
Now City Council is trying to find a way to ensure safety but also make sure the city's vulnerable have a place to go.
Security guard Muhamed Vele has monitored the skyways for a decade. He says this year aggressive behavior has been a real problem.
"I find drugs in the skyways, I find drugs in the bathroom, I find lots of people drunk and fighting or in the stairway, I'm sorry, I see prostitution," Vele said.
Vele believes ordinances should be put in place to regulate skyway safety.
"Homeless need to be somewhere but maybe the government need to find someplace for the homeless or homeless shelter or someplace because this is not good for the town," Vele said.
Naima Yusuf uses the skyways every day and notices the needy populating the spaces. She does not believe closing skyways overnight is the best solution.
"It's a place that's away from the elements," Yusuf said. "It's not that warm but it's warmer than what outside would be."
City Council will return to the skyway ordinance issue sometime in the next month.