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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


Harborview Hall opening to welcome up to 100 adults and their pets to warm, safe shelter on First Hill

Summary

King County is opening the first floor of the vacant Harborview Hall building on Seattle’s First Hill to create shelter for up to 100 men and women experiencing homelessness. Metro and Solid Ground are increasing the capacity of the Seattle Circulator bus to help people who need transportation to and from the shelter to the downtown area and bus tickets will be available to help others get to work or appointments.

Story

As many as 100 single adults and couples will have a safe, warm place to sleep indoors as King County opens a new homeless shelter in the vacant Harborview Hall building located at 326 Ninth Avenue in Seattle on Friday, December 21, 2018 at 7 p.m. The shelter will also welcome their pets.

“As thousands of our neighbors continue to struggle to find affordable housing, we know that we must do all that we can to create safe alternatives to sleeping on the streets, particularly as winter weather sets in,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “As we open an overnight shelter at Harborview Hall, we will continue to seek out available properties and facilities that we can deploy in the fight against homelessness.”

King County is using a portion of the unused space on the first floor of the building as an overnight shelter for adults. The Salvation Army will be the shelter operator, and they will use a bed reservation system to reduce people needing to wait outside. Storage space will be available for those who wish to lock up personal belongings during the day and return in the evening. Hours of operation are 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. seven days a week. 

"With too many of our neighbors are living unsheltered across our City, County Executive Constantine and I have been working to substantially increase the number of shelters, which are nearly at capacity across the City. We’ve made historic investments to building more affordable housing, but until those homes are built, we need safer spaces like Harborview Hall in our City to bring our neighbor's experiencing homelessness indoors," said Mayor Jenny A. Durkan.

 

"Between the City and County, we’ve embarked upon an unprecedented effort to open additional beds in 2018, with more to come online in early 2019," said Mayor Durkan. "Because of the leadership of the County Executive, the work for our service providers, and commitment from city and county employees, we are moving more people off the streets and into safer places."

 

Due to nearly a decade of building vacancy, the County’s Facilities Management Division completed significant repairs in advance of the opening. This work made the first floor useable for the shelter operations, including:
    • upgrading the fire alarm system;
    • installing washable flooring;
    • new plumbing fixtures,
    • new exiting signage;
    • emergency lighting; and
    • general repairs and maintenance.

 

County staff are continuing work on plans and cost estimates to potentially expand to a 24/7 enhanced shelter with case management and other services in 2019.

Harborview Hall will be open for a media tour

WHEN: Friday, Dec. 21, at 10am
WHERE: Harborview Hall, 326 9th Ave., Seattle, 98104
WHO: Mark Ellerbrook from the Department of Community and Human Services will lead

Relevant links

Quotes

As thousands of our neighbors continue to struggle to find affordable housing, we know that we must do all that we can to create safe alternatives to sleeping on the streets, particularly as winter weather sets in. As we open an overnight shelter at Harborview Hall, we will continue to seek out available properties and facilities that we can deploy in the fight against homelessness.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

With too many of our neighbors are living unsheltered across our City, County Executive Constantine and I have been working to substantially increase the number of shelters, which are nearly at capacity across the City. We’ve made historic investments to building more affordable housing, but until those homes are built, we need safer spaces like Harborview Hall in our City to bring our neighbor's experiencing homelessness indoors. Between the City and County, we’ve embarked upon an unprecedented effort to open additional beds in 2018, with more to come online in early 2019," said Mayor Durkan. "Because of the leadership of the County Executive, the work for our service providers, and commitment from city and county employees, we are moving more people off the streets and into safer places."

Jenny A. Durkan, Mayor of Seattle 

Harborview has long provided necessary care to the residents of King County, and this shelter at Harborview Hall is the latest way that we are carrying on this mission. There is much more work to do to address the homelessness experienced by too many of our neighbors, but for today, I am thrilled that more people and their animal companions will have a safe, warm place to sleep tonight.

Joe McDermott, chair of King County Council

The Salvation Army is proud of our continued partnership with King County on solving homelessness. Harborview Hall and other emergency shelters provide a safe, quiet place to sleep, away from the elements. And, these shelters are often the first step in a homeless person transitioning to permanent housing.

Captain Jonathan Harvey, General Secretary, The Salvation Army in the Northwest Name

For more information, contact:

Alex Fryer, Executive Office, 206-477-7966


King County Executive
Dow Constantine
Dow constantine portrait

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