Fort Wayne-based Design Collaborative celebrated its completion of the new Fort Wayne Rescue Mission City on a Hill project during the invitation-only ribbon cutting event held on Friday, July 10, 2020. Serving the community’s most vulnerable residents for over 100 years, the previous space was over capacity due to a growing homeless population, and the site had limitations preventing expansion.
Design Collaborative started design on the facility at the corner of Lafayette Street and Washington Blvd. in downtown Fort Wayne in 2016, which is nearly four times the size of the previous facility, houses three times the number of residents, and expands critical resources for residents in a non-institutional setting. The new facility is strategically located to city resources, potential employers, and target population groups.
Referred to as a “mini city,” open to program enrollees and the community, it includes over 300 beds and is complete with a full-service professional kitchen, training kitchen, chapel, commercial laundry, barber shop, comprehensive community resource center, outreach center for substance abuse, an on-site health clinic, mental health and addiction counseling, spiritual care, continuing education, vocational training, rooftop garden, and job placement services. The design intentionally maximizes every square foot of the footprint, including an entire floor dedicated to future growth. Partnerships with up to 16 area agencies allow residents access to services in-house, eliminating the need for travel to different locations to secure much needed resources. This means residents get the care and resources they need faster and in a much safer manner.
“Design Collaborative had the honor of working with The Rescue Mission and its passionate staff to design a place that will actively serve those in need, providing not only basic needs, but resources that will support strong, healthy and successful lives,” stated Jeremiah Hatfield, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, senior associate for Design Collaborative.
Staff and residents will move into the building at the end of July and early August.