Salt Lake City Homeless Resource Centers

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To provide comprehensive and dignified services for houseless individuals in Salt Lake City, a public-private partnership among the City, County, and non-profit organization Shelter the Homeless is constructing three homeless resource centers distributed throughout the metro area. The partnership enlisted Holst to advise on the program and design of two of the shelters and to design the third in collaboration with local firm ajc architects.

The South Salt Lake Homeless Resource Center will provide services and temporary shelter to three hundred men each day. The design approach centers on a thoughtful, controlled progression from intake to various service locations. The spacious circulation spine, wrapped in folded metal that contrasts the brick structure on the exterior, is easily navigable, open, and welcoming.

Open and Secure

A central grand stair as the main floor-to-floor circulation supports safety and security by enabling clear visibility of activity from the front desk.

The ground floor program is focused on daytime uses, including a large dining hall, commercial kitchen, medical clinic, and a secure central courtyard with southern exposure. A large grand stair leads occupants to the second floor public spaces, life skills training rooms, and bunkroom pods. Public spaces, like the second floor community room expressed on the facade, present a welcoming face to the street; administrative spaces converge at the rear of the first floor. On the second floor, clerestory windows and skylights bring light into the bunkroom pods while maintaining privacy. Special populations and guests in crisis have separate, designated sleeping areas.

In the main circulation space, the underside of the building envelope’s metal wrapper is lined with wood with acoustical slats for noise attenuation. Painted metal railings visually correspond to the exterior and interior materials. An emphasis on energy efficiency and a tightly designed and detailed building envelope help the building meet the requirements for Utah Sustainable Building Certification.

Designed for Respite

The design of both the building and courtyard follow a three-foot module that contributes to an intuitively soothing sense of scale and proportion.


Salt Lake County
Salt Lake City
Shelter the Homeless


South Salt Lake, UT




90,000 sq. ft.