Healthcare for the Homeless-Houston
Houston, TX United States
Healthcare for the Homeless – Houston (HHH) serves a vulnerable and marginalized population of homeless men, women and children. Their mission is to provide long-term care for those who are unable to navigate a larger system of care; provide interim care for those who can transition into the public healthcare system; and provide medical outreach to those who live on the streets or in single-night shelters.
For many years, HHH shared space in a building with SEARCH Homeless Services, operating out of 6,425 square feet. Page was engaged to assist with facility programming to help HHH relocate and expand their facility. The design team renovated an existing three-story building in downtown Houston, providing a dedicated, single-user facility that was completely gutted and renovated to fit their mission. The new facility provides 20,375 square feet of clinic and office support space, plus a 4,000-square-foot parking area.
Renovations include an open stair between waiting areas, an exterior “lantern” over the new entry, a new elevator, and larger energy-efficient windows that provide daylighting deep inside the facility. Translucent partitions in the waiting rooms and dental clinic provide visual privacy while still allowing light to permeate the building. Finishes throughout the space were chosen to be inviting and durable, and impart a sense of warmth and comfort. New signage incorporated into the architecture also increases the organization’s visibility from the adjacent freeway.
The first level is primarily dedicated to parking and administrative space. The main entry opens to a small foyer designed to usher clients up an open staircase to check in and proceed to waiting areas on the second and third floors. While an elevator is available for those who need it, the communicating staircase provides clientele with a sense of welcoming open space, and also serves as a security and safety measure by increasing visibility from numerous vantage points.
The second-story medical clinic design was planned with a flexible module so that offices could be converted to exam rooms in the future, or vice versa, if needs shift. The clinic provides 12 exam rooms, an in-house pharmacy, and small testing labs. The waiting and exam rooms provide electrical outlets for clients to charge wireless phones. At the second floor waiting room, a door with a one-way mirror leads to the COO’s office, allowing her to identify optimal times to visit with clientele while they wait.
The top floor includes six dental stations, each one providing space for client belongings. Behavioral health spaces and offices have glass sidelights which bring in daylighting for energy efficiency, add an enhanced sense of openness, and create a safer environment for occupants while retaining client privacy. A dedicated space on the third floor, used by staff and over 400 annual volunteers, accommodates work stations, training spaces and personal lockers.
Publications + News
- Case Study: Award-winning Non-profit Healthcare Clinic
- NeoCon2016: Industry Recognition
- Design That Makes A Difference: Healthcare for the Homeless
- Providing Health, Hope & Dignity