Through new protocol and additional case management providers, the City of Norman and Norman Housing Authority in concert with the Cleveland County Continuum of Care have increased efforts to find housing for community members experiencing homelessness, as the City-managed Emergency Shelter is slated to close June 27, 2022.
The shelter, located on East Comanche Street, consists of 35 beds and has been in operation since Winter 2020. The City received notice of a request to vacate the property this week and staff has begun the process of notifying associated contractors and community partners of the closure. Within the notice, stipulations of property insurance cancelation for the leaser were also disclosed.
Operations at the Emergency Shelter will cease June 27, 2022, with the last overnight operation slated to be June 26/27. Physical notice of the closure will be posted on site.
Clients that have been utilizing the Emergency Shelter are encouraged to work with case managers at the Emergency Shelter and partner agencies through the month of June to identify housing and shelter options moving forward. The Salvation Army Emergency Shelter, 318 E. Hayes, remains in operation.
The City of Norman continues to participate with nonprofit agencies that makeup the Continuum of Care and appreciates the myriad of services offered to community members in need, to include shelter and housing. The City of Norman Emergency Shelter was funded by an Emergency Solutions Grants administered by the Oklahoma Department of Commerce as part of the COVID Relief efforts, for which the contract expires August 31, 2022.
Leading up to the announcement of closure, the City of Norman exhausted great efforts in identifying a new location for the Emergency Shelter. Relocation efforts have not come to fruition; the most recent attempt at relocation involved exploration of the Griffin Memorial Complex, but was not achieved upon receipt of separate development plans by the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services relayed in April 2022.
Included within the City of Norman’s application to the State of Oklahoma for ARPA funding was $5M for the construction and operation of an Emergency Shelter. If funds are awarded, the public will be kept apprised of plans moving forward concerning how this funding could be put to use.
A Request for Proposal (RFP) will be released in weeks to come from the City of Norman to evaluate the capabilities of community partners to address homelessness and/or provide emergency shelter in Norman.