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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


King County purchases Health Through Housing site in Kirkland - Second on Eastside and Tenth Overall

Summary

Following a building suitability review, King County has closed on the purchase of the former La Quinta Inn and & Suites in Kirkland. The hotel is the 10th Health Through Housing site and will provide permanent supportive housing for people experiencing or at-risk of chronic homelessness. This is the County’s first Health Through Housing purchase in 2022, and its second location on the Eastside.

Story

King County Executive Dow Constantine today announced the County has acquired the La Quinta Inn & Suites in Kirkland. The hotel will serve as the second permanent supportive housing location on the Eastside as part of the Health Through Housing Initiative. With this latest addition, the tenth property acquired since last year, King County has secured nearly 1,000 units for chronically homeless residents to provide housing that is dignified, protective, and service enriched.

“I am grateful for our partnership with the City of Kirkland, Mayor Penny Sweet, and the local leaders who recognize the need for a countywide approach to some of the pressing issues we face as a region,” said Executive Constantine. “Expanding our network and partnering with communities, we are building a regional solution to chronic homelessness, and opening doors to a home for hundreds of people in King County.”

The hotel is located at 10530 Northup Way and is near I-405 and adjacent to several public transportation options that run throughout the city and region. The building was constructed in 1979, contains 121 rooms plus meeting space, and sits on 1.83 acres. The Kirkland purchase combined with the Redmond location acquired last year will bring 265 units to the Eastside.

In addition to a room to call their own, the hotel will offer residents 24/7 onsite staffing that will include case management and connections to physical and behavioral health services. A competitive process will determine the onsite service provider in Kirkland before the facility is operational. The County will also complete building improvements and work with the operator, city, and community to establish a Good Neighbor Agreement before welcoming the first residents to the building in 2023. King County and the City of Kirkland will soon announce a schedule of public meetings to occur in Spring 2022 to receive additional input from community members and inform upcoming County and City decisions like selecting an operator for the housing and measuring success of the program in Kirkland.

“Kirkland firmly believes in the vision for the Health Through Housing Initiative as it aligns with Kirkland’s values of providing help and services to those experiencing homelessness in our city and our region,” said Kirkland Mayor Penny Sweet. “The conversion of this hotel into permanent supportive housing continues Kirkland’s commitment to being a safe, inclusive, and welcoming community where everyone belongs and will save lives. We look forward to continued collaboration with the County, Executive Constantine, and the community to ensure this site is a safe, successful part of the solution that addresses the growing homelessness humanitarian crisis in our region.”

“Housing and homelessness are two inextricably linked issues that demand swift action from our county and our state in tandem to meet the needs of our neighbors head-on," said Senator Patty Kuderer, who chairs the Senate Housing & Local Government Committee. “When we passed HB 1070 last year to allow cities and counties to use their resources to buy existing buildings, we did a deep dive into the data. The jury is not out on this. This is a proven approach that helps our community members find safe and stable housing.”

“We urge the County to work with the City of Kirkland and its residents in creating a safe, sustainable, and healthy plan for permanent supportive housing at this site. Ensuring the human dignity of those experiencing homelessness is good for the whole community. Individuals and families experiencing homelessness are not our enemies; they are not a reason to fear. We are called to love our neighbors as ourselves, and this project is an excellent way to do just that,” said Pastor Katy McCallum Sachse, Holy Spirit Lutheran Church.

Health Through Housing is a regional approach to addressing chronic homelessness on a countywide scale. By the end of 2022, King County will partner with local jurisdictions to create up to 1,600 emergency housing and permanent supportive housing units for people experiencing chronic homelessness.

The initiative is governed by the Health Through Housing Implementation Plan adopted by the King County Council in December 2021. Last year, King County purchased five buildings in Seattle, plus buildings in Auburn, Federal Way, Redmond, and Renton. The County continues to work with local jurisdictions on future acquisitions to meet the initiative’s goals.


Relevant links


Quotes

I am grateful for our partnership with the City of Kirkland, Mayor Penny Sweet, and the local leaders who recognize the need for a countywide approach to some of the pressing issues we face as a region. Expanding our network and partnering with communities, we are building a regional solution to chronic homelessness, and opening doors to a home for hundreds of people in King County.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

Kirkland firmly believes in the vision for the Health Through Housing Initiative as it aligns with Kirkland’s values of providing help and services to those experiencing homelessness in our city and our region. The conversion of this hotel into permanent supportive housing continues Kirkland’s commitment to being a safe, inclusive, and welcoming community where everyone belongs and will save lives. We look forward to continued collaboration with the County, Executive Constantine, and the community to ensure this site is a safe, successful part of the solution that addresses the growing homelessness humanitarian crisis in our region.

Kirkland Mayor Penny Sweet

I am proud that East King County is standing up to be part of the solution for our many local neighbors who are suffering without places to live. Permanent supportive housing is a proven solution to reduce the number of people experiencing chronic homelessness—it provides housing along with the supports residents need to stay housed. This is the start of the process and I am committed to working with the community and the City of Kirkland to address concerns and make sure this project is successful for everyone, both the residents of the facility and the surrounding neighbors.

Claudia Balducci, King County Council Chair

Housing and homelessness are two inextricably linked issues that demand swift action from our county and our state in tandem to meet the needs of our neighbors head-on. When we passed HB 1070 last year to allow cities and counties to use their resources to buy existing buildings, we did a deep dive into the data. The jury is not out on this. This is a proven approach that helps our community members find safe and stable housing.

Senator Patty Kuderer, Chair of Housing & Local Government Committee

We urge the County to work with the City of Kirkland and its residents in creating a safe, sustainable, and healthy plan for permanent supportive housing at this site. Ensuring the human dignity of those experiencing homelessness is good for the whole community. Individuals and families experiencing homelessness are not our enemies; they are not a reason to fear. We are called to love our neighbors as ourselves, and this project is an excellent way to do just that.

Pastor Katy McCallum Sachse, Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

For more information, contact:

Chase Gallagher, Executive Office, 206-263-8537


King County Executive
Dow Constantine
Dow constantine portrait

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