Jacksonville Homeless Shelter

Savannah College of Art and Design
Savannah, Georgia
Bhavana Shyamsundar
Business Phone: (240) 672-4379

Project Location: Jacksonville, Florida

Project Description

There are currently 1.5 million homeless youth living on the streets in the United States and around 300,000 children are at risk of sex trafficking. Woman, and children become homeless due to physical, sexual and/or emotional abuse from their parents, making them feel neglected and making them the biggest targets for sex trafficking. Around 70% of female prostitutes were sexually abused as children and around 60% of prostitutes started before the age of eighteen. Women and children use “survival sex” as a way of staying alive and keeping themselves off the streets, but it is a never ending cycle that they come across which could lead to a deadly ending. Florida was named 3rd in human trafficking cases, where Jacksonville in particular was ranked 3rd in the nation for HIV/AIDS. Around 80% of Florida victims are women and children which brought to light a need for a homeless shelter in this area. The Serenity House will be a safe haven for youth and young woman who are trying to get out of the situation they are in, as well as house mothers and their families so woman can engage and be surrounded by a healthy and loving environment. There are many programmatic pieces to this project which were laid out on 12 different floors. Floors 5, and 7-12 are comprised of living units for the residents. Floor one has a cafe, clinic and residence entrance. Floor 2 has the pharmacy, day care and therapy sessions. Floor 3 is the educational floor with offices, classrooms, and computer labs. Floor 4 is the cafeteria for the residents which includes seating, kitchen, and restrooms. Lastly floor 6 is a recreational room and laundry room. The overall design of this shelter is meant for young woman to understand their worth are human beings and jump-start their life again.

Design Challenge

Design a structure that would be useful for a particular community in downtown Jacksonville Florida. -Creating a mid-rise building where the first three floors are open to the public. Clinic offers free HIV/AIDS testing. Second floor holds therapy sessions and the third floor is an educational center for people who want to receive their GED, cooking classes, or cosmetology classes. -The residential area is split up into long-term and short-term stay.

Physical Context

The buildings extrusions respond to either the different architectural building features around the design or the height of the different buildings. The buildings surrounding this site are high-rise skyscrapers, 2-4 story storefronts, or mid rise parking garages and residential units. I tried to add balconies in areas that faced busy streets to create that urban feel within the shelter. The slant that is located on the ‘dead end’ side of the building filters sunlight to the residential quarters so each bedroom accesses sunlight.