EVERETT — Compass Health is planning an 82-unit supportive housing complex next to its building at 3322 Broadway.
The units are primarily for homeless people living with mental illness, according to public records. Plans call for around-the-clock staffing. The project cost is estimated at $21 million.
The housing is part of a long-term redesign of the nonprofit’s campus on Broadway. Construction could start in late 2018. However, what happens next depends on zoning rules that might be changing next year. The project falls into a larger conversation around the Metro Everett rezoning plan, involving building heights as well as downtown development and social services.
The Daily Herald recently obtained Compass Health’s planning documents from the city through a public disclosure request.
Behavioral and mental health needs are critical regional issues, and there aren’t enough resources, Compass CEO Tom Sebastian said Wednesday in a prepared statement.
The Broadway project “is a direct response to this crisis that brings together the latest thinking and research,” he said.
Compass Health hopes to create a sense of community within the block, combining housing and services, “while respecting the integrity of the surrounding neighborhood,” he said.
Funding still is getting figured out, and it might depend on the state capital budget, he said. Eventually, the site would see a second phase of construction, creating a hub for mental health services with traditional medical care.
The proposed housing complex would be 68,105 square feet, records show. Services would be on the first floor with five additional floors of apartments, mostly studios with 350 square feet each.
Compass Health also was seeking to include a daytime “recovery support center” for any adult with a behavioral health condition, records show. Something similar is in place now. Local churches, nonprofits and other organizations have been talking in recent months about a need for more places for homeless people to go in Everett during the day.
The city has said the housing would be allowed, but the zoning might be complicated for the new day center. The current zoning varies for the Broadway side of the property versus the side facing Lombard Avenue, for example.
“It would be too soon to know for sure how the Metro Everett plan would affect that because nothing has been approved yet,” city spokeswoman Meghan Pembroke said Wednesday. “We’re aware of their intention for the property and we’re taking that into consideration.”
Compass Health’s Broadway location provides mental health treatment, 40 units of housing, and other services including a triage center. A small 1915-vintage house on the property will be demolished to make room for construction. The house is used as a temporary shelter for people leaving Western State Hospital. Those services will move into the new complex, according to Compass Health. Other programs on site aren’t expected to be disrupted by construction.
Snohomish County might contribute $498,000 to the project. That would be drawn from a mental health fund that is generated by sales tax revenue. The pledge depends on other funding sources coming together, officials said.
Several supportive or low-barrier housing projects are under way in Everett. Those includes the city’s project with Catholic Housing Services on Berkshire Drive and Housing Hope’s plans for HopeWorks Station II on Broadway. Cocoon House also is working on an expanded shelter and housing on Colby Avenue.