Gensler Portland Partners with Rose Haven to Design its New Community Day Shelter

Gensler Portland Partners with Rose Haven to Design its New Community Day Shelter

Gensler Portland has partnered with Rose Haven, Portland's only day shelter for women and children, to design its new 10,000 sq. ft. space - a facility three times the size of their existing footprint to help them better serve the homeless and make a positive impact on the Portland community. This renovated building will not only provide necessary services to Rose Haven's guests, but it will also offer a compassionate and safe environment where they can heal with respect and dignity.

Oregon has the second highest rate of homelessness in the country with 35 people out of every 10,000 in the state lacking shelter and about 62% percent of the state's homeless living outside, in tents, or cars. As more people are unable to get into shelters, they rely on organizations like Rose Haven, Portland's only day shelter and community center serving women, children and gender non-conforming folks experiencing varying disruptive life challenges to meet basic needs. The new Nob Hill location (a few blocks from Rose Haven's present location) is the old World Cup Coffee shop and warehouse at NW 18th Avenue and Glisan Street.

"Our work with Rose Haven is about community and making a meaningful impact in Portland," said Sun Joo Kim, Design Manager and Associate with Gensler Portland. "It has been a privilege to design with such an amazing, mission driven client team who provide essential services which are particularly critical during this pandemic. Katie and her team do so much in the limited space they currently have, and we are thrilled to help them create a space that allows them to do even more. The opportunity to learn about trauma informed design, inclusive design, and psychological safety in real time has been an invaluable experience, as well as partnering with Swinerton, Mazzetti, Code Unlimited, and Bookin Group who generously donated their time. We're excited to see the new home come to life and to continue the partnerships made by coming together for the Rose Haven community."

For the Rose Haven project, Gensler's design team facilitated visioning sessions for Rose Haven's team comprised of directors, volunteers, and advocates to provide the framework they could leverage to conduct a visioning session with the women and children they serve. This focused on decision-making, providing an inclusive experience to ensure all voices were heard, engaging with diverse viewpoints, and community outreach.

Rose Haven's new space will include a welcoming intake and reception area, guest services area, activity rooms, prep-kitchen and pantry, community dining room, wellness area with showers, laundry and medic room, and a boutique-inspired area where guests can select donated clothing items. Offices and workspaces for Rose Haven's team of directors, advocates, and volunteers will also be incorporated into the design.

The design will feature natural, exposed, wood beams contrasting with light walls and furniture to give the space a warm, open feel where Rose Haven's guests can socialize and feel a sense of community or find a quiet place of respite. Splashes of pastel hues throughout will make this comfortable and calming environment even more inviting.

Construction of Rose Haven's new space will begin in the Fall of 2021 with an anticipated move-in date of January 2022.

Images: Courtesy of Gensler Portland