Mayor London Breed speaks at the site of the future Transitional Age Youth Navigation Center at 888 Post St. in Lower Nob Hill on Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

New navigation center planned for former City College facility

A new SAFE Navigation Center in San Francisco’s Upper Market Area announced Wednesday will help Mayor London Breed accomplish her goal of opening 1,000 new shelter beds by the end of 2020.

The new navigation center, located at a City College of San Francisco site at 33 Gough St. that is slated for development, would provide 200 beds for people experiencing homelessness. The facility is slated to open by the end of year.

Breed made the announcement during a visit to the site of another upcoming navigation center, the Transitional Age Youth Navigation Center, located at 888 Post St.

“Opening up these shelter beds would not be possible without the commitment of our service providers, community partners, and dedicated city staff,” Breed said in a statement.

“I’m proud we are on track to deliver on our promise to open 1,000 new shelter beds by the end of this year—the largest expansion in the last 30 years—but we know we need to do more,” she said. “There are still thousands of people living on our sidewalks and our open spaces and we can no longer allow our streets to be the floor of our homeless response system. We have to make sure we are expanding our homeless response system across the entire spectrum of interventions, including housing, behavioral health beds, shelter, and other places. This is how we can create a place for everyone in need.”

“Having a safe place to sleep inside is a critical step in the journey out of homelessness. I am thrilled that we begin 2020 with expanded shelter and additional housing coming online,” Jeff Kositsky, director of the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, said.

In addition to opening a total of 1,000 new shelter beds by the end of the year, Breed is also hoping to open at least 2,000 placements for people experiencing homelessness, including placements in permanent supportive housing, scattered-site supportive housing, master leased housing, behavioral health beds, and expanded shelter and drop-in center capacity.

According to Breed’s office, since she first announced her goal to open 1,000 new shelter beds by the end of 2020 back in 2018, the city has opened 566 beds, with another 499 on the way. The 499 beds in the pipeline include 24 at the Jelani House, set to open next month; 200 beds at the new Bayview SAFE Shelter, opening later this year, 75 beds at the 888 Post St. location, and 200 beds at the newly announced Upper Market SAFE Navigation Center.

Daniel Montes, Bay City News

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