At a city council policy committee on January 24 we heard an update about the Homeless Day Resource Center located in the former Aurora Police gym on the Anschutz campus. In past years, the gym had been heated with steam heat from the steam plant at Fitz, which is no longer possible. Xcel Energy was able to convert the gym to gas heat.
Construction crews are in the process of doing the interior remodel of the space for the resource center’s needs. The gym is 9,000-10,000 sf. There will be six shower stalls and 6-8 sleeping bays for people who are not feeling well and need to rest. There will be office space with tables and computers. The existing gym lockers will stay and can be used for free by people seeking services at the center. There will be a refrigerator and food warmer, but the commercial kitchen at Comitis will be preparing most meals that will be served at the resource center.
The center will close at 7 p.m. each day, so there is still some concern about where people will spend the night. Some will be able to stay at Comitis Crisis Center on a space available basis. This resource center will be staffed by several nonprofits in Aurora that provide services for the homeless, including job training, laundry services, lockers and other services. Area churches will be able to participate in the future by providing staffing and lunch for those seeing help at the center. Details of these volunteer opportunities are still being worked out. The hope is that this resource center will be open in a few weeks. Aurora City Council has approved funding this resource center with marijuana sales tax revenues.