As the year draws to a close, King County partnerships continue to open doors to new homes

This week, King County Executive Dow Constantine announced the upcoming opening for Health Through Housing: Salmonberry Lofts, a newly constructed building providing 76 units of permanent supportive housing in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. The building will welcome the first residents later this month and is operated by Chief Seattle Club, an organization with a local footprint in the community. New residents will continue to move in through February 2023. The first floor of the building will include community meeting space and activity rooms.

“We know the transformative power of having a safe, dignified place to live, and opening the doors of Salmonberry Lofts moves us closer to our goal that every person will have a home and the opportunity to move forward in their lives,” said Executive Constantine. “None of this would be possible without the partnership of the City of Seattle and community-based providers like Chief Seattle Club.

Designed in partnership with Chief Seattle Club to be culturally appropriate, Salmonberry will center traditional wellness in its programming, in addition to wraparound services such as behavioral health supports and employment navigation. It is just around the corner from Chief Seattle Club’s urban housing complex ʔálʔal. This is the first Health Through Housing partnership with the organization as building operators.

“Native Americans and Alaska Natives make up just one percent of the population but are the highest percentage of our city’s chronically homeless. Our work isn’t done until every one of our relatives has a place to call home,” said Derrick Belgarde, Executive Director of Chief Seattle Club. “Homelessness was met with urgency during the COVID pandemic, which was so important. But it’s critical that all levels of government act with this urgency always. We need more creative partnerships to ensure that developments like Salmonberry Lofts and ʔálʔal are built to meet the growing and immediate need for housing.”

Later this month, the Department of Community and Human Services is working with the City of Auburn and Compass Housing Alliance, to help partially open the sixth Health Through Housing building in Auburn. Compass Housing Alliance, the building operator is experienced in supportive housing and services.

“Compass Housing Alliance is excited about this opportunity and spent the past several months collaborating and getting to know our various partners in this work. We are continually impressed by the collective expertise and compassion of everyone involved,” said Mary Steele, Executive Director at Compass Housing Alliance. “We believe that supportive housing like what is offered through the Health Through Housing partnership is the key to addressing homelessness and housing instability across the county.”

The Auburn property will welcome 90 residents over the coming months. As with all Health Through Housing properties, both the Salmonberry and Auburn sites will have 24/7 building staffing, including case managers, housing navigators, connection to health and behavioral services, and assistance in entitlement and employment programs.

With these latest openings, King County has housed 565 people, purchased 1,011 units in 11 buildings across the regions. In 2023, King County will open the Federal Way, Kirkland, and Redmond Health Through Housing buildings, and intends to purchase at least one additional building.