Maricopa County Partners with Tempe to Fund a Cooling Center as Summer Heat Begins
The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has approved $50,000 in funding for the operation of a new cooling center in Tempe. The funding is part of the County’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) allocation that is being used to help support the most vulnerable people in Maricopa County.
“We fully recognize the grave and potentially life-threatening repercussions of the relentless summer heat,” emphasized Clint Hickman, Chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, representing District 4. “That’s why it is imperative for us to forge partnerships like this one with the City of Tempe so we have multiple life-saving heat relief sites across our vast county.”
Through this agreement, the City of Tempe will operate an indoor cooling center at a facility known as the EnVision Center, located at 1310 E. Apache Blvd.
The EnVision Center’s cooling center began operations on June 5 and is available every day of the week from noon to 8 p.m. through September 30. The center welcomes anyone who needs a place to cool down and hydrate, including individuals and families vulnerable to heat-related illness and those experiencing homelessness.
“Maricopa County and the City of Tempe are dedicated to working together to address the challenges posed by extreme heat,” said Supervisor Jack Sellers. “In the short term, that means a cool indoor space to hydrate and recover. But EnVision Center will be so much more than that: it will also provide resources to help people get their long-term housing and financial needs met.”
Guests at the cooling center will have access to air conditioning, restrooms, and drinking water. Staff will connect anyone coming to the center with wraparound services, including housing assessments, case management, and workforce opportunities to address the comprehensive needs of the individuals served, promoting long-term stability and access to vital resources.
“We are grateful for Maricopa County’s continued partnership and leadership,” said Tempe Mayor Corey Woods. “With the opening of this new cooling center, those in need will have access to nine different options through the city and community nonprofits for heat relief and connections to resources.”
It is estimated that the cooling center will serve approximately 1,120 individuals through its 118 days of operation. This is the second partnership in recent weeks between Maricopa County and the City of Tempe on homelessness. On May 15, a $10 million partnership was announced that will expand shelter options through the purchase of a motel to house approximately 120 people experiencing homelessness.
For more information on investments made by Maricopa County on homelessness, visit Maricopa.gov/HS, and to learn more about services available in Tempe’s Community Health and Human Services, visit Tempe.gov.