AUSTIN, Texas — With the overnight low Monday expected to fall to 30 degrees, Front Steps has activated its cold weather shelter at the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless (ARCH).
Single adult men and women are asked to arrive at the ARCH at 5:15 p.m., when the lottery process is set to begin on the second floor. Guests are asked to pay attention to staff announcements to know when they are allowed to proceed upstairs.
The lottery process will determine which clients will be sheltered at the off-site shelter for the night. Those who are selected will be provided bus transportation to the shelter at 6 p.m., which is about five blocks away from the ARCH. The bus will shuttle clients back to the ARCH at 6 a.m. Tuesday.
Clients who do not have a current tuberculosis test on file with Front Steps should plan to attend the lottery for the off-site shelter, as all tuberculosis policies remain in full effect at the ARCH.
According to Front Steps, everyone is guaranteed a place inside. A number of churches and recreation centers are on standby to house remaining clients, depending on the initial headcount at the ARCH. Capital Metro will provide transportation from these locations.
Families are asked to arrive at 7 p.m. at the Salvation Army at 501 E. Eighth St. for cold weather shelter admittance. Phone call requests are not permitted ahead of time.
The Salvation Army will take four or five additional families, giving them beds at the downtown shelter. The Salvation Army will also add 14 mats to the "safe sleep" area, which already has 16 cots. Men, women and single adults are allowed in the safe sleep area.
The cold weather shelter is activated at the ARCH any time the weather is below 32 degrees, or when it's below 35 degrees and it's also raining or there are high winds.
There is also a youth cold weather shelter being activated at Lifeworks East at 835 North Pleasant Valley Road. Dinner and breakfast will be provided. Pets must stay at the Austin Animal Center, but coordination will be provided. People should arrive between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. and the bus routes are 300 and 493. Lights out is midnight and wake up time is 7 a.m.
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