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Power outage forces cold weather shelter location change

Power outage forces cold weather shelter location change
Posted at 7:59 PM, Feb 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-15 23:32:52-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Dangerously low temperatures have dozens of people seeking shelter from the cold.

On Sunday night, Corpus Christi city leaders said around 120 people utilized the shelter they set up at the American Bank Center.

But Monday brought power outages that state electrical grid operators say were required because the wintry weather reduced power production.

The shelter at the American Bank Center experienced one of those outages.

“It’s really frozen here, and they’re trying to get us to move around, but the lights keep turning off," an unnamed shelter-user said.

City leaders say they spent the day coming up with an alternate location for the shelter.They settled on the FEMA dome at Del Mar College's West Campus.

The facility lacks the number of restrooms and the overall space that the ABC provides, but unlike the previous location -- the FEMA dome has a generator.

"We’re not exactly sure how long through the week we’ll keep it in operation, but as long as the weather is cold, we’ll keep it." City Manager Peter Zanoni said.

City fleet vans transported shelter-users from the ABC to Del Mar West Monday night.

Despite the lack of a generator, the city says the original location was chosen for two reasons.

“The American Bank Center is one where we knew the clients knew the location," Zanoni said while pointing out the large homeless population near the ABC. "They could walk there. And secondly it provided ample space and a lot of restroom facilities."

Having to move from one location to the other doesn't bother some shelter-users who are just happy to be out of the cold.

"We’re just out here trying to make it with the kid — a baby," the unnamed shelter-user said.