About the Oxnard Navigation Center
The City of Oxnard, along with other large cities throughout the state of California, is being severely impacted by the state’s homeless crisis. Ventura County’s 2019 point-in-time homeless count identified 548 people living on the streets, in vehicles or encampments, or in shelters within the City of Oxnard. This number does not include homeless individuals staying with family and friends, which could mean an additional 2,500 homeless individuals residing in the City.
In 2018, the City Council authorized the Oxnard Housing Authority staff to operate a temporary 24-hour homeless shelter at the former Oxnard National Guard Armory (351 South K St.). Due to the site’s location within the Oxnard Airport’s Runway Protection Zone, the shelter would not be feasible for long term use and would require staff to identify a site for a permanent homeless shelter.
In 2019, the City Council approved a lease agreement for the City to operate a new homeless shelter located at 1258 Saviers Rd. in Oxnard. The City sought to create a Navigation Center: a 24-hour, year-round shelter with 110 beds, shower and laundry facilities, a meal program, pet accommodations, housing navigation and case management services for homeless individuals in Oxnard.
Current Oxnard Navigation Center Status
The City formally withdrew from the lease agreement at Saviers Rd. in January 2020 and is now looking to take a broader approach in its response to homelessness.
While the site at Saviers would adequately serve the purpose of a Navigation Center, the City agreed with the feedback received from the community about expanding the service offerings with a new shelter. At the direction of the City Manager, the City is seeking to develop a new mixed-use multi-level building that will include a Navigation Center, office space for supportive service providers, recuperative care beds, and permanent supportive housing units.
The City owns property at 241 West Second St. in Downtown Oxnard and is currently in the early stages of exploring the construction of the new facility at this location. As the West Second St. site would require new construction, the City is seeking community insights to develop a comprehensive resource for addressing homelessness in Oxnard. The City-owned site offers the potential to create a building design that is responsive to the needs of the Oxnard community, is built in compliance with Downtown codes, and maintains the historic feel of the neighborhood.
The West Second St. project has evolved from the Saviers Rd. lease into a new project that provides the City with an opportunity to build a mixed-use building that supports the “Housing First” model of addressing homelessness.
The City will host a Community Town Hall for the new Navigation Center location at 241 W. Second St. on Tuesday, February 11, 2020.
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Oxnard Main Library – Meeting Room B
251 S. A St., Oxnard, CA 93030
As the City transitions to a new shelter location, City staff will be engaging with the public and seeking their insights regarding the design, development and operation of the Oxnard Navigation Center.
Navigation Center Details
The Oxnard Navigation Center on W. Second Street will be providing a 24-hour, year-round shelter with 110 beds, shower and laundry facilities, a meal program, pet accommodations, housing navigation and case management services for homeless individuals in Oxnard. Additionally, the City plans to add 40-60 permanent supportive housing units, recuperative care beds, and office space for supportive service providers.
Navigation Centers are essential to reducing the unsheltered homeless population in Oxnard. The shelter offers a low-barrier, high-service program that is designed to connect homeless individuals to services and provide housing assistance.
The City of Oxnard will operate the shelter with Mercy House, a nonprofit who manages operations and assists individuals with determining a path out of homelessness. The City has worked with Mercy House since June of 2019, helping to connect with homeless individuals through the shelter’s service offerings.
Addressing Safety Concerns for Navigation Center Neighbors
The City of Oxnard is committed to protecting the safety of both the Navigation Center’s guests and the neighboring community near 241 W. Second St.
When the city opened its first 24-hour shelter on South K St., the site’s operator, Mercy House, contracted for a private 24-hour security service, that service will continue to be provided at the W. Second Street site. Additionally, the Fire Department Administration and Police Department are located within walking distance from the W. Second Street Site. There are plans to also have other City services involved with the shelter.
Navigation Center Frequently Asked Questions
A list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding the Oxnard Navigation Center are included below.
What is a low barrier shelter?
Low barrier shelters are designed to meet the needs of those experiencing homelessness in a community. The shelter serves homeless men and women with priority for those living in Oxnard. All clients of this shelter must be eighteen years of age or older, or must be able to provide valid documentation if they are emancipated youths. All prospective clients will be screened for open felony warrants and status as a registered sex offender. If the client has open felony warrants or is a registered sex offender, they are not eligible for this program and should connect to resources with our nonprofit partners.
Who is Mercy House?
Mercy House is a nonprofit 401 (C) 3. Mercy House provides housing and comprehensive supportive services for a variety of homeless populations which includes families, adult men and women, mothers and their children, persons living with HIV and AIDS, individuals overcoming substance addictions, and some who are physically and mentally disabled.
Mercy strives to assist residents in the areas of economic, emotional, and spiritual well-being in order to enhance self-esteem and a sense of personal pride. Mercy values accountability, integrity, and self-sufficiency. The dignity of the individual person and the corresponding respect that follows is the guiding principle of Mercy House’s service to homeless individuals.
Mission Statement: To be a leader in ending homelessness by providing a unique system of dignified housing opportunities, programs, and supportive services.
Goal: To end the cycle of homelessness of those who enter Mercy’s system of care.
Will the navigation center operate with a good neighbor policy?
Mercy Housing will operate the Oxnard Navigation Center under a good neighbor policy including the provision of case managers, housing navigators, and local homeless social service agency staff to assist shelter participants. In addition, Mercy Housing will provide 24-hour security service and work to minimize negative impacts within 500 ft. of the shelter facility due to any activity conducted by shelter participants or other homeless persons.
What services will be offered on site at the navigation center?
Services include shower, laundry facilities, a meal program, pet accommodations, housing navigation, case management, linkages to medical, mental health, dental services and other supportive services as needed.
Why must the navigation center relocate from K Street?
The navigation center operation at 351 K Street intrudes within the runway protection zone of the Oxnard Airport, which may impact potential navigation center funding from the County of Ventura. Therefore, it must be re-located.
Is a navigation center consistent with a Housing First policy?
A low barrier navigation center is consistent with a housing first model of homeless services because supportive services are delivered under the protection of a shelter without imposing barriers to entry into the navigation center.
What security will be offered at the navigation center?
Professional security guards are contracted through a third-party vendor and receive “Homeless Sensitivity Training” through the Mercy House resources. Security will be on site at all times, stationed both inside and outside the facility to ensure maximum coverage.
If you have additional questions, please email Emilio Ramirez at email@example.com.