Health Through Housing Redmond Grand Opening
Members of the Redmond City Council joined Redmond Mayor Angela Birney, King County Councilmember Sarah Perry, King County staff, and nonprofit leaders from The Salvation Army and PorchLight to celebrate the forthcoming opening of the Redmond Health Through Housing facility (Photo: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

A for­mer Sil­ver Cloud Inn in Red­mond’s Over­lake neigh­bor­hood is only a few weeks away from wel­com­ing peo­ple who are expe­ri­enc­ing home­less­ness, King Coun­ty staff shared today at a media and com­mu­ni­ty event cel­e­brat­ing the forth­com­ing open­ing of the coun­ty’s Red­mond Health Through Hous­ing building.

The ex-hotel was ini­tial­ly used to pro­vide hous­ing for Afghan refugees after King Coun­ty bought the prop­er­ty. “From May through Decem­ber 2022, near­ly 800 Afghan refugees received tem­po­rary hous­ing, reset­tle­ment sup­port, and con­nec­tion to the com­mu­ni­ty through the county’s Refugee Reset­tle­ment Hotel pro­gram. Of those who par­tic­i­pat­ed, near­ly all secured per­ma­nent hous­ing,” the coun­ty explained in a news release.

Now the build­ing will be used to pro­vide a hun­dred hous­ing units as well as sup­port ser­vices for peo­ple who are try­ing to escape from chron­ic homelessness.

The coun­ty and the City of Red­mond have cho­sen The Sal­va­tion Army to be the prop­er­ty’s oper­a­tor. The facil­i­ty will offer round-the-clock staffing and sup­port ser­vices — that means 24/7/365! — which will include ORCA cards, dai­ly meals, case man­age­ment sup­port, and indi­vid­u­al­ly tai­lored behav­io­r­i­al health­care, accord­ing to King Coun­ty Exec­u­tive Dow Con­stan­ti­ne’s office. Though Con­stan­tine was not present at today’s event (he was rep­re­sent­ed by Deputy Exec­u­tive Shan­non Brad­dock), he expressed opti­mism in a pre­pared state­ment that the facil­i­ty would give a boost to efforts to house the homeless.

“This lat­est Health Through Hous­ing open­ing in Red­mond shows what can hap­pen when cities take on the chal­lenge of home­less­ness and work togeth­er with local orga­ni­za­tions to cre­ate hous­ing options,” said Constantine.

“Health Through Hous­ing Red­mond will be life-chang­ing for its one hun­dred res­i­dents. When peo­ple feel wel­comed, safe, and sup­port­ed they’re bet­ter able to engage in their own health and well-being, which brings long-term stability.”

“In Red­mond, we are com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing proac­tive, wrap­around ser­vices to sup­port unshel­tered peo­ple in our region. By sup­port­ing their well-being, we work toward ensur­ing every­one has an oppor­tu­ni­ty to reach their poten­tial and ful­ly con­tribute to the com­mu­ni­ty,” said Red­mond May­or Angela Bir­ney, who spoke at the event. “We val­ue our part­ner­ships with The Sal­va­tion Army and King Coun­ty and cel­e­brate our shared com­mit­ment to trans­form­ing lives through the Health Through Hous­ing initiative.”

“The Sal­va­tion Army is hon­ored to part­ner with King Coun­ty, the City of Red­mond, and many oth­er com­mu­ni­ty agen­cies to serve as oper­a­tor of the Health Through Hous­ing Red­mond loca­tion,” said Lieu­tenant Colonel Cindy Foley, The Sal­va­tion Army’s North­west Divi­sion­al Com­man­der, who joined Bir­ney and Brad­dock for the speak­ing pro­gram, which KOMO 4 and KING 5 sent crews to cov­er. “Home­less­ness con­tin­ues to grow at a stag­ger­ing rate in our region. This pro­gram pro­vides oppor­tu­ni­ty for one hun­dred res­i­dents to receive safe­ty, refuge, and wrap­around ser­vices that include shel­ter, case man­age­ment, coun­sel­ing, behav­ioral health sup­port, meals, com­mu­ni­ty, and more. The Sal­va­tion Army is here to save the lives of our King Coun­ty neigh­bors in need.”

“There is an afford­able hous­ing short­age of 240,000 homes in King Coun­ty right now. Our fam­i­ly mem­bers, loved ones, and neigh­bors with dis­abil­i­ties who have been forced to live out­side are vic­tims of this lack of hous­ing. At the end of the day, these are folks whom we know and love, or folks whom those we know and love, know,” said King Coun­ty Coun­cilmem­ber Sarah Perry.

“Either way, they need to be in a place that allows them to live mean­ing­ful, pro­duc­tive lives for the bet­ter­ment of them­selves, and for our com­mu­ni­ty as a whole. The inno­v­a­tive approach that Health Through Hous­ing brings is exact­ly that oppor­tu­ni­ty. It is no sur­prise, but I am still tru­ly grate­ful, that we are able to part­ner with one of our most inno­v­a­tive cities, Red­mond, along with The Sal­va­tion Army, to help allow our neigh­bors with dis­abil­i­ties to live in homes instead of outside.”

After the speak­ing pro­gram had con­clud­ed, coun­ty staff led tours of the build­ing for media, elect­ed offi­cials, and com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers. They not­ed that some mod­i­fi­ca­tions still need to be made to the build­ing before it will be ready to wel­come residents.

For exam­ple, some rooms still have mul­ti­ple beds in them, and the plan is to have just one bed per unit. This addi­tion­al work will take at least a few more weeks. Nev­er­the­less, the coun­ty char­ac­ter­ized today’s mile­stone as a grand opening.

Offi­cials hope to be accept­ing peo­ple into the facil­i­ty by the end of May. It will be the first oper­a­tional Health Through Hous­ing site in the coun­ty’s east­ern region.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

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