‘Want to go quick’: Catholic Charities shelter moving out of downtown, won’t release location

SPOKANE, Wash. — The House of Charity is moving out of downtown Spokane. Catholic Charities will open a new low-barrier shelter somewhere else. Where that will be isn’t being released to the public.

“We want to go quick. We build a lot of buildings at Catholic Charities, and we know how to do it,” said Rob McCann. He’s the President and CEO of Catholic Charities.

He says they want to be able to better serve the homeless in a new, state-of-the-art facility.

“The reality for us is we want to be able to do more for the homeless, more services, a better path to housing,” he said. “We know the House of Charity is not going to work in its current location.”

The new location is still unknown to the public, but McCann says they already own the location and have the zoning needed to open a shelter. It’s the reality that a new 300-bed low barrier shelter will open somewhere in Spokane, outside of downtown.

On Wednesday following Mayor Nadine Woodward’s announcement of the relocation during her State of the City address, McCann wouldn’t answer when 4 News Now asked.

“I’m not going to answer that question,” McCann said. “The best place to build a homeless shelter folks is somewhere else. Everybody knows it. It’s a reality and so we’re going to have to talk to people to get them okay with what’s coming.”

He says neighborhood outreach starts now, and they’re working with the people and businesses nearby to mitigate concerns.

He says the new shelter will house up to 300 people, have outdoor space for those who still want to sleep outside and hospice care.

“This is a substantial facility. It will probably be the biggest facility I would guess anywhere between Seattle and Minneapolis for the kind of work that we’re doing,” he added.

He says they will still own the location at 32 W. Pacific Ave. but will use the space for offices. They will keep the dorms as they are but will only activate them in an emergency if the City or County desperately needed more shelter space.

READ: City Council to vote on homeless shelter resolution, mayor moves forward with plans