City of Spokane in search for new temporary homeless shelter

SPOKANE, Wash. — After the temporary warming shelter at the Spokane Convention Center closed Sunday morning, the city is looking for a new location.

The city has requested assistance from the state Emergency Operations Center in search of a temporary shelter to serve the houseless for the rest of the winter season. The city wants to pivot from continuously using the Convention Center as it has been since the beginning of the pandemic.

After the warming center handled hundreds of people, the city wants to transition those occupants into a permanent regional shelter system. With the Convention Center liable to getting rented out, prolonged usage and damage to the facility are not feasible in the long run.

“The community and our partners rallied around the most vulnerable in our community during a prolonged stretch of significant weather,” said Mayor Nadine Woodward. “Finding another location we can activate on short notice is a priority. We have been searching unsuccessfully for months and have not given up.”

The city is searching for a property that has around 20,000 square feet, accommodatable restroom facilities, and easy access to public transportation. It must also be distant from the downtown core and any schools, daycares, businesses, and retail stores.

The City’s Emergency Management Department recently sent out a request to the state’s Emergency Operations Center to help in this search.

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