A day shelter providing respite and services for the homeless

Created by a coalition of nonprofit institutions, the St. Joseph Rebuild Center in New Orleans is a day shelter providing comprehensive services for homeless. Built in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the center is set of custom-built, semi-permanent interconnected structures where clients have access to free meals, showers, laundry facilities, mental and physical health services, and social services in a supportive environment. Costing just over $1 million, the center is an outstanding example of collaborative placemaking to provide temporary shelter and services in response to disaster situations.

St. Joseph Rebuild Center welcomes under-served homeless population into a well accommodated, attractive, light-weight structure of decks, trellises and trailers.

2009 Selection Committee

A collaboration among four Catholic organizations allowed for the many services they each offered individually to be centrally located in one service center. Six trailers were specially manufactured for the project, several small buildings and rooms were built on site, and a series of walkways, decks, floating roofs and trellises tie the buildings together around small landscaped courtyards. Notable for being both elegant and inexpensive, the design by the Detroit Design Collaborative from University of Detroit Mercy and a local architect preserves and communicates dignity and respect for clients.