Mayor Cooper announces plans to open emergency shelters, housing center following outcry

Posted at 3:35 PM, Oct 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-17 16:35:57-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A budget issue was going to keep emergency shelters from opening this winter, but the day after the news broke, Mayor John Cooper announced a solution to the problem and plans to keep further help the homeless community.

Budget issue keeps Metro from opening emergency shelters this winter

Cooper met with Metro Social Services and the Office of Emergency Management Thursday. He said they were able to work together to fully fund the emergency cold weather shelter program for the 2019-2020 season.

“Metro’s emergency shelter program will be fully funded and 100 percent operational this coming winter,” said Cooper. “As soon as we learned that Metro departments did not have the funding this year to open the overflow shelter, my administration moved to address the problem. I am committed to protecting the most vulnerable members of our community, and I’m tremendously thankful to our friends in the many non-profit and religious organizations in Nashville who do such good work on behalf of our unsheltered and unhoused neighbors.”

Mayor Cooper also released plans to construct what he called a Permanent Supportive Housing Center - a multi-floor building featuring 112 living units. It will also include voluntary social services to help those experiencing chronic homelessness in Nashville.

It was part of the 2019 Capital Spending Plan and the contract for design and construction has already been awarded to Bell & Associates Construction. It will be located at 505 2nd Avenue North. A groundbreaking is set for the end of October and it is expected to be completed by the end of 2021.