AUSTIN (KXAN) — After frigid temperatures came through Central Texas late last week and over the weekend, the City of Austin said it, along with partner agencies, were able to help shelter hundreds of people in overnight shelters, according to a city news release.
The city said it opened five overnight cold weather shelters from Thursday evening to Tuesday morning, the release said.
Additionally, four warming centers opened Friday and Saturday during the day at city facilities.
“Over the past few days and into the holidays, staff – and our community partners – worked around the clock to ensure our City was prepared and that our most vulnerable populations had access to shelter. Thank you to all those assisting with operations, coordinating logistics, providing education and outreach, working the Cold Weather Shelters and Warming Centers that served hundreds of our unhoused residents, and to our public safety staff who work day in and day out to keep our community safe.”
-Austin City Manager Spencer Cronk
The number of people who stayed at cold weather shelters ranged from 459 on Friday, Dec. 23, to 115 on Monday, Dec. 26. In total, 1,559 shelter stays were recorded between Thursday, Dec. 22, and Monday, Dec. 26, the release said.
The city said it will continue to work closely with community groups to further improve shelter response, outreach and coordination of resources as part of broader efforts to address homelessness and strengthen community resilience, the release said.
To track future cold weather shelter activations, the public can routinely call the cold weather shelter hotline at (512) 305-4233, according to the city.