Lighthouse Mission is remodeling its four-building campus in Bellingham’s Old Town, which includes demolition of its building at 910 W. Holly St. and building a new facility there.
“There has been an increase in local homelessness and this is our response to that problem,” said Hans Erchinger-Davis, Executive Director of Lighthouse Mission Ministries. “We want to be equipped to better meet the need that we are seeing in our community.
“This campus wide remodel and new facility will enable us to increase our reach and serve more of the most vulnerable adults and children in our area. The new facility will include specific services and living space for families in crisis, seniors, people who are medically fragile, and people living with a mental health condition. These are all populations that are currently underserved in our community – gaps that have existed for a long time.”
The project will expand the programs across Lighthouse Mission’s campus with distinct programs for subgroups of the homeless population.
Lighthouse Mission values a team approach, and the new facility will have space for local service providers serving our homeless neighbors in Whatcom County to meet with their clients, Erchinger-Davis added.
The new five-story, 75,000-square-foot facility will include space for relocation of the emergency homeless services center that temporarily is at 1530 Cornwall Ave. and known as Base Camp.
“We promised the community we would find a permanent site for Base Camp and relocate there within four years,” said Hans Erchinger-Davis, Executive Director of Lighthouse Mission Ministries. “After much study, a new building on property we already own is the best option to meet all of our needs.”
A tentative timeline, contingent on gaining funding and appropriate permits, estimates demolition of the current building would occur in the spring of 2022. Construction would begin in the summer of 2022 and take 14 months to complete. Dawson Construction of Bellingham is doing the pre-construction stage and Bellingham-based Zervas is the architectural firm.
“The new facility would include space for 24 hour homeless services and programming for various groups of our most vulnerable community members experiencing homelessness. It will also contain administrative offices and add a few commercial/retail spaces along Holly Street to support the workplace development stages of our continuum,” Erchinger-Davis said.
Lighthouse Mission Ministries also plans to remodel its New Life Center and upgrade the façade of the Mossey Center (also known as Agape Home), two of its other buildings along Holly Street, by 2024.
“These expansions and improvements will enable us to double the impact on the 2,500 precious lives we walked with in 2020 to 5,000 precious lives in 2025,” Erchinger-Davis said.
Questions about the new facility or fundraising can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Lighthouse Mission is committed to breaking barriers, transforming lives, and building this community together,” Erchinger-Davis said.
An online public meeting to introduce the project and answer questions before permits are sought will be conducted on Zoom at 6 p.m. Wednesday, May 26. To register for the meeting, visit https://bit.ly/2QeON2H.
Lighthouse Mission Ministries has been “healing homelessness with Christ’s power and love” since 1923. It supports up to 310 people each day in a continuum of services aimed at ending homelessness through street outreach, enhanced 24-hour shelter services, addiction recovery, spiritual support and aftercare. To make a donation, call (360) 733-5120 or visit www.thelighthousemission.org/donation. If you’re interested in volunteering, take the first steps here.
Visit the FAQ we created to help answer any questions in the community that arise because of this future project.