City to use Edmonton Convention Centre as homeless shelter over the winter
Edmonton Convention Centre (Jay Rosove/CTV News Edmonton)
EDMONTON -- The Edmonton Convention Centre is the facility the city will use for its temporary shelter for the homeless.
The shelter will house Edmontonians experiencing homelessness during the pandemic until March.
City data shows there are approximately 2,000 homeless people in Edmonton, with more than 600 of them sleeping outside.
"The pandemic created a gap in services and increased the number of people falling into homeless each month," said Adam Laughlin, Edmonton's interim manager. "This temporary facility provides those people with safety, services, and a pathway to permanent housing."
The facility will be open 24/7 and offer beds, food, washrooms and showers, and access to health and wellness support, including mental health and addiction resources.
There will also be housing support workers that will help guests transition into bridge accommodations and a long-term home.
Up to 300 people can stay overnight, and as many as 400 people can use the shelter's services during the day.
The facility will open in late October.
Edmonton is using $8 million it received from Ottawa and the province to pay for it.