Dec 1, 2022 - News

Beds still available in Salt Lake County's winter overflow shelters

Illustration of the dotted outline of a house key, but no house key.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Nearly one month after opening, overflow winter shelters in Salt Lake County have not yet reached full capacity, according to Wayne Niederhauser, the state's homeless services coordinator.

  • Local and state leaders met with reporters Wednesday at the Salt Lake Chamber to provide updates on their efforts to address Salt Lake County's homeless population.

Why it matters: Night temperatures are expected to drop to the low 20s and high teens in the coming weeks, forcing individuals encountering homelessness to seek warm places to sleep.

Details: The Millcreek shelter's capacity is currently at 50%–75%, he said.

  • It's located at the former Calvin Smith Library and has 100 beds.

Catch up quick: In September, the Utah Homelessness Council approved the addition of 340 winter overflow beds across three sites in Salt Lake County.

What they're saying: Niederhauser said he expects the demand to increase as the winter months get colder and damper.

  • "We're not running at full capacity. But we have the capacity, hopefully, to address those who need to come or want to come to shelter during the winter," he said.
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