Officials with the nonprofit describe the existing buildings, found at the intersection of Lovett and Yoakum boulevards in Montrose, as outdated and in need of an update. The campus includes a drop-in center, where youth ages 18-24 can access meals, laundry, clothing, showers and recreational facilities; a clinic; an emergency shelter; and housing for Covenant's Rights of Passage program, where youths can stay in traditional housing for up to two years while learning how to budget and live independently.
While construction is underway, youth residents and support staff are working from a temporary home at 3412 Beulah St., Houston, in the Third Ward.
Founded in 1972 in New York City, the faith-based nonprofit maintains 31 locations across North and Central America, according to the nonprofit's website. The Houston location, which opened in 1983, offers services that include mental and physical health care, career counseling, job training and educational support.
In fall 2021, Covenant House received a $750,000 subsidy from Texas Capital Bank and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas to redevelop the campus. The new campus will feature common areas, offices and support areas, and will help house up to 52 homeless youth, an increase in capacity of more than 50%, according to a news release published at the time.
In a June 21 presentation to the city of Houston's Housing and Community Affairs Committee, officials with Houston's Housing and Community Development Department said the new facility will include a commercial kitchen, career center with computers, outdoor courtyard, recreational facilities and age-appropriate facilities for childcare, including art and music rooms, a library and office space.
The total cost of the project is estimated at $47.2 million, with funds coming from the city of Houston, Harris County, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas, other loans and a capital campaign by Covenant House that had raised $26.8 million as of the June 21 presentation.
The demolition, scheduled to begin at 10 a.m., will be carried out by Pin Oak Interests. Gensler is the architect behind the project, and more details are expected to be released at an Oct. 14 demolition ceremony.