FRESNO, California (KGPE) – Fresno’s cooling centers are open starting Thursday for anyone to escape triple-digit temperatures lasting throughout the weekend. Attendance has been low in the past, but city leaders hope that people start taking advantage of the centers.
“The challenge with operating cooling centers is the attendance,” explained the city’s Sontaya Rose. “Typically, it has been lower than we’d like to see.”
A $25,000 grant from PG&E will keep cooling centers available to the public. The city of Fresno has also increased the number of cooling centers to 12.
A couple from Porterville who used to live in the Fresno area thought the cooling center at Romain Park was the perfect place to escape triple-digit temperatures.
“To be able to kind of relax and recoup from the heat in between appointments and try to get some work done and try to get some lunch in,” said Martha Lozano.
“Due to COVID, we weren’t able to eat at the restaurant that we got our food in and I had asked Martha, is there a park in the neighborhood and she said well yes there’s this park down the street and then it reminded her of the cooling centers,” said Angel Silva.
The couple says they’ll stay at the center for around two hours where the thermostat is set to a cool seventy degrees.
“And it is cold, it is cold…and that’s coming from a person who’s always hot,” said Silva.
Fresno’s cooling centers are open from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The City of Clovis also has a cooling center that is open 24/7, in the lobby of the police and fire headquarters off of 5th Street.