In a built-out City with few vacant properties, finding an ideal location for a navigation center is challenging. Over the past several years, the City carefully assessed 35 different sites, with the greatest consideration given to these properties:

April 2019
5770 Research Drive
May 2019
15311 Pipeline Lane
July 2019
17712 Crabb Lane
August 2019
17881 Beach Boulevard
December 2019
17371 Gothard Street
April 2020
17631 Cameron Lane

17642 Beach Boulevard

17631 Cameron Lane & 17642 Beach Boulevard

After much deliberation and input from the community, the City Council identified two adjacent, vacant parcels at 17631 Cameron Lane and 17642 Beach Boulevard as the most appropriate sites for the navigation center.  Together, they are approximately 1.6 acres.

In February 2020, the City Council approved the purchase of 17631 Cameron Lane and closed escrow in August 2020.  The property was purchased using the City’s Low-Moderate Income Housing Asset Funds.  Also, in August 2020, the City entered into a lease for 17642 Beach Boulevard. 

The City spent approximately $2.2M in COVID-19 restricted funds from the County and State to develop its portion of the 174-bed navigation center.  The City will also spend an additional $2.6M in the first year for operator, Mercy House, who is managing the facility, providing 24/7 security and administrative staffing, and providing furniture/fixtures/equipment.  These funds are derived from very restricted funding sources that may only be used towards a navigation center or other limited qualified expenses. 

The navigation center was developed in partnership with the County of Orange.  Given the complexities associated with getting a shelter facility built and operational, these combined, adjacent sites were identified as the quickest path to establishing a shelter facility that will also meet our obligations under a pending Settlement Agreement. 

    • The Cameron Lane and Beach Boulevard properties are vacant and available for immediate development, moving us towards meeting our legal mandate to provide shelter beds if we wish to resume enforcing anti-camping ordinances.
    • The sites are not adjacent to public schools and parks.
    • The facility will only be accessible from Beach Boulevard . The sites will be fenced and patrolled by security 24/7 with increased police presence in the surrounding area.
    • The site is intended to be used as a shelter temporarily. It will eventually be developed as permanent supportive housing for chronically homeless families and individuals. 
    • The site is adjacent to Huntington Hospital for any medical emergencies that may arise. A Crisis Stabilization Unit for severe mental health issues is also in development.
  • 174 beds
  • Nearest Park: 1,895 feet (Lake View) Nearest School: 1,593 feet (Lake View)
  • Entrance/exit off Beach Boulevard only
  • Clients must be homeless in Huntington Beach or have had previous ties to the community.
  • Shelter operator hired security for 24/7 coverage on-site, as well as a 24-hour hotline to report concerns.
  • “Walk in” clients are not permitted.  They must make prior arrangements with our homeless outreach providers who will determine their eligibility.
  • Clients must be screened and sign a User Agreement to adhere to certain rules of conduct prior to being admitted at the Center.
  • To enter or exit the site, clients must use the Center’s free shuttle service, which transports them to required appointments and services.  This will prevent loitering on or near the site.
  • Site is fenced and well lit.
  • Clients with open felony warrants or registered offenders may not be admitted into the Center.
  • Serves adult men, women and couples.
  • Pets allowed.

Goals For the program operator

The City completed a rigorous RFQ process to identify an establish homeless shelter operator for this site. Two operators submitted their qualifications.  Following rigorous vetting, Mercy House was selected.  A final agreement was executed in August 2020.

Mercy House currently operates 8 shelters or 1,288 beds in total, including the Link in Santa Ana, and is also a provider for permanent supportive housing facilities. They are well-recognized throughout the region