Mayor London Breed Announces New Waterfront Site as Part of 1,000 Bed Shelter Plan
Mayor proposes site on Embarcadero for 200 bed SAFE Navigation Center to provide shelter and services for homeless residents, particularly those living on the waterfront for four years
San Francisco, CA — Today Mayor London N. Breed announced a proposal to build a new 200-bed SAFE Navigation Center on the San Francisco waterfront to provide temporary housing and services for unsheltered residents. The site, at Seawall Lot 330 on the Embarcadero, is currently a parking lot across the street from Piers 30-32 and is owned by the Port of San Francisco.
In October, Mayor Breed announced a plan to add 1,000 new shelter beds by 2020, with 500 of them being built by this summer. Since then, the City has added 212 new beds at two new Navigation Centers and City staff has been working to identify more sites. The proposed waterfront site would be the Mayor’s first SAFE Navigation Center, which take the best practices and lessons learned from prior Navigation Centers, allowing guests to bring their partners, pets, and belongings with them and providing support to connect residents with services and permanent housing in a setting with 24/7 access. SAFE Navigation Centers are designed to be rapidly implementable and more cost-effective than traditional navigation centers. SAFE Navigation Centers will accept placements with a priority for people in the vicinity of the site, and will employ robust good neighbor policies and 24-hour security.
“To help those living on our streets, we need to meet people with shelters and services where they are,” said Mayor Breed. “The waterfront has a number of challenges around homelessness, and by bringing this SAFE Navigation Center to the area, we can work to address these challenges and get our unsheltered residents on a path to housing and stability.”
The funding for the SAFE Navigation Center on the Embarcadero will come from the recently approved Educational Revenue Augmentation Fund (ERAF) funding, which will provide both capital and operational costs. The proposal is to use this location for four years while the Port works with the community on the long-term development of the site. Mayor Breed’s ordinance to declare a Shelter Crisis, which will help expedite the creation of new shelters citywide, was approved by both the Building Inspection Commission and the Planning Commission last week and is pending at the Board of Supervisors.
“This SAFE Navigation Center is an opportunity for us to address the urgent and growing challenge of homelessness in the Rincon Hill, South Beach and Mission Bay communities,” said Supervisor Matt Haney, who represents District 6 on the Board of Supervisors. “We know that ending street homelessness requires us to build more shelter beds with high-quality wrap around services. I’m committed to working closely with residents, businesses, and Mayor Breed to ensure that we move forward collaboratively in a way that addresses community needs and improves quality of life for everyone in the neighborhood.”
The Port Commission will hold an informational hearing on the use of Seawall Lot 330 as a SAFE Navigation Center in March. The Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing and the Port will also host community meetings on the proposal. The Port Commission will consider action in April. If approved by the Port Commission, San Francisco Public Works will construct the facility, which will open by the end of the summer.
“The Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing and the Port had a very positive experience working with the Dogpatch community, including the Dogpatch Neighborhood Association, on the Central Waterfront Navigation Center,” said Elaine Forbes, Executive Director of the Port of San Francisco. “I look forward to working with the South Beach community and am proud the Port can play a part in supporting Mayor Breed’s efforts to tackle the crisis of homelessness in our City.”
The Dogpatch Neighborhood Association recently voted to urge the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing and the Port to extend the term of the Central Waterfront Navigation Center beyond the initial three-year term because the facility has become a vital part of the neighborhood.
The City, through the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, currently offers temporary shelter to 2,500 people per night through traditional shelters, stabilization beds, Navigation Centers and transitional housing. In addition, they maintain housing for 9,000 people through permanent supportive housing.
“Seawall Lot 330 offers an excellent opportunity to create a SAFE Navigation Center to serve the needs of homeless people in northeastern San Francisco,” said Jeff Kositsky, Director of the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing. “We hope to replicate the successful partnership we had with the Port and the Dogpatch community at our Central Waterfront site.”