COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. –   The dust is flying at the Springs Rescue Mission as crews work feverishly to get a massive $13.8 million expansion complete.

“It’s really important to be able to have shelter beds in place by the time cold weather starts rolling in,” said Stu Davis, Community Relations Director of the Springs Rescue Mission.

Despite a few bumps along the way, both the Rescue Mission and Nunn Construction are confident they will have the doors open by November 1.

The new shelter will hold close to 200 beds and provide a place to go year-round, but Davis said it will help hundreds more than that.

“Right across the courtyard from us is going to be the Day Center and that really is the key to making the whole shelter thing happen, because it’s not just a place for people to come and find a bed, it’s also about putting them on a pathway, on a track to recovery,” said Davis.

The expansion will also include some new upgrades, like a larger dining hall and even a geothermal system that will supply heat to the entire campus.

“We’re drilling 18 holes. They range between 420 to 500 feet deep. They will basically bring up the earth temperature, recycle it, bring it out into these buildings to a central location and then it gets dispersed from there,” said Cody Murphy, Superintendent for Nunn Construction.

So far the mission has secured around $9 million for the project, mostly from private donors who have recognized the need in the community.

“It’s critical. You look around the community and you can’t help but notice there are folks all over the community who are lacking shelter and just don’t have any other place to be able to go,” said Davis.

Davis added that the homeless population is growing, partly because people on the brink of homelessness are losing their fight and partly because organizations have gotten better at finding and identifying people who are homeless.

He adds the population is also more visible in the summer months because there is nowhere for them to go.

“So having such a visible population, we need to be able to provide folks a safe, sustainable place to go,” said Davis. “Not just to provide immediate relief resources, the food, the shelter, the bed, those kinds of things, but also the pathways toward recovery and rehabilitation, the ongoing services.”

One of the mission’s success stories can be found on the construction site.

Kevin was living on the streets and struggling with addiction when he found the Springs Rescue Mission. After a year long intensive program he landed a job with Nunn Construction, the general contractor for the expansion project.

“Now he’s working, he’s stabilized, he’s got a consistent job,” said Davis. “He’s got his own housing, his own transportation and now he’s giving back to the very place that helped put him on a path to recovery. You can’t paint a better picture than that one. It’s awesome.”

Crews said the completed project will be unlike anything that typically comes to mind at the words “homeless shelter.”

“It will be a very good looking campus when it’s all said and done,” said Murphy. “It will be something that the city will have a lot of pride in.”