The Safe Outdoor Space Launch Kit: A Guide to Developing Spaces of Belonging is a graphic handbook that details and visualizes multiple step-by-step scenarios on how to develop and implement a Safe Outdoor Space from a design and technical assistance perspective. By documenting multiple design options, cost comparisons, and lessons learned, other jurisdictions in Colorado can benefit from our team’s experience and expertise in the development of their own Safe Outdoor Spaces.
According to The Metro Denver Homeless Initiative’s 2020 Point in Time Count, there are 6,104 individuals experiencing homelessness and 1,561 people experiencing unsheltered homelessness in Denver. In response to COVID-19 and research indicating the heightened vulnerability of people experiencing homelessness, Radian partnered with the City and County of Denver, Colorado Village Collaborative, and The Interfaith Alliance to conceptualize, design, and build Denver’s first Safe Outdoor Spaces (SOS).
A Safe Outdoor Space is a 24/7-staffed camping site for people who are currently experiencing homelessness in Denver, with a particular focus on individuals who are traditionally unable to access existing shelter options including couples, pet owners, and LGBTQ+ individuals. The SOS sites provide privacy and security; bathrooms, hand sinks, showers, and laundry; trash services; shade and warming tents; electricity and internet; drinking water and daily meals; and outreach services including housing and employment referral.
Radian has supported partner organizations with design development, project management, and implementation of eight safe outdoor space sites throughout Colorado, sheltering 274 individuals in total. Radian continued to support the design and implementation of Safe Outdoor Spaces by providing technical assistance to partner organizations as well as being a thought leader to other jurisdictions throughout the country.
Radian is currently working with partner organizations on the development of additional chapters of The SOS Launch Kit to accommodate the requests of other groups that need additional information in the launch of their SOS sites.