Homeless Help: A New Plan

San Francisco Public Press
 — Feb 17 2015 - 10:37am

San Francisco’s new Navigation Center, opening in March, will give chronically homeless people round-the-clock access to living quarters and other amenities while center staff help them find permanent housing.

This detailed map shows how all the buildings of the former Phoenix Continuation High School in the Mission District probably will be used. Most will be client dormitories, able to host an estimated 75 people at once. Showers, a kitchen, dining hall, outdoor picnic tables, and even dog kennels are also in the plans.

Bevan Dufty, the mayor’s homelessness czar, said clients will keep their animals with them in their dorms at night, and the center will staff the dog run during the day. He said he expects to host a wide range of other pets as well, from rabbits to reptiles.

The communal style of housing fits the facility’s novel approach. Rather than trying to help one homeless client at a time, center staff will seek housing solutions for entire groups at once. For some, the best solution might be veteran housing. For others, it could be a shelter or returning to live with family members.

The center’s layout may change by the time it opens, Dufty said.