San Mateo County Navigation Center


The San Mateo County Navigation Center represents the first built instance of the Office of Charles F. Bloszies’s “Step(1)” interim supportive housing system, derived from the modular concept developed for the award-winning Mountain View Homekey facility.

This project does not consist of “tiny homes” – the clients’ sleeping units are private quarters within the larger complex with shared amenities, services, and exterior spaces that comprise a supportive community.

This Navigation Center serves roughly 260 formerly unhoused clients at a time, with anticipated stays of 3-6 months. The facility serves as a sanctuary for residents to recover from life on the street and successfully transition to stable housing. With this goal in mind, the site is designed to provide a balance between privacy and community.

With the exception of two larger structures for gathering spaces and communal dining, all buildings are composed of prefabricated modules. While these components were being built in a factory, grading, utility installation, and foundation construction prepared the 2.5-acre site to receive them. These efficiencies in schedule and construction allowed this facility to be built at a very economical cost of roughly $200k per bed.

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