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Warming centres being activated as temporary shelters near capacity

December 19 2017 301 beds across 10 locations are currently occupied

Province and City of Vancouver partner to provide winter shelters

In response to this week's extreme weather alert and as part of the City of Vancouver's Warming Centre Program, three temporary warming centres will be activated starting December 20 to provide a safe, warm place for people living on the street. Warming centres are activated when the temperature reaches -5°C or below (or it feels like -5°C or below).

Warming centre locations

Warming centres will be activated at the following locations and will remain open to December 27:

  • Britannia Community Centre - 1739 Venables Street (Hours: 9pm-8:30am)
  • Carnegie Community Centre - 401 Main Street (Hours: 11:15pm - 7am)
  • West End Community Centre - 870 Denman Street (Hours: 11pm - 7am)

In addition, the City in partnership with BC Housing opened almost double the number of temporary shelter beds in the city this year as a response to winter weather. On November 1, the first of 301 temporary shelters beds were activated. The final two temporary shelters were opened as of December 15; all other shelters are operating at full capacity.

Temporary shelter locations

There are 10 temporary shelter locations open this winter until March 2018. The full list of shelters includes:

  • 1648 E 1st Ave., operated by RainCity Housing
  • 1401 Hornby St., operated by RainCity Housing
  • 1060 Howe St., operated by Community Builders
  • 1138 Burrard St., operated by Directions Youth Services
  • 828 Cambie St., operated by Catholic Charities Men's Hostel
  • 609 Helmcken St., operated by the Gathering Place Community Centre
  • 131 Dunlevy Ave., operated by Atira Women's Resource Society
  • 119 E. Cordova St., operated by Salvation Army (Chapel Shelter)
  • 134 E. Cordova St., operated by Salvation Army (Anchor of Hope Shelter)
  • 138 E. Cordova St., operated by Salvation Army (Sutherland Shelter)

Since 2009, the Province has partnered with the City of Vancouver to open temporary shelter beds, in addition to the more than 900 year-round shelter beds that are available.  Temporary shelters save lives by connecting residents who are homeless with necessary health, social, and housing services.

The City and the Province are also working to open 600 new units of temporary modular housing across Vancouver to address the immediate needs of people experiencing homelessness.

As part of a strategy to address the needs for more permanent housing, 1,000 new units of social housing will be opening in Vancouver from this fall through the end of next year.

Those looking for shelter space can call 2-1-1 to check availability or view a full list of shelters online. Community centres and other public buildings are also available during their open hours as spaces to warm up.