Downtown Shelter at Former Greyhound Station Opens Today With 100-Person Capacity

The seasonal shelter in Old Town prioritizes veterans, people 55 and older, and those with disabling conditions.

Galleria MAX station, downtown Portland. (Alex Wittwer)

A shelter opens today in the former Greyhound bus station in Portland's Old Town that can fit up to 100 houseless Portlanders while maintaining 6 feet of distance between people.

The Downtown Physical Distancing Winter Shelter, a 30,000-square-foot space at 550 NW 6th Ave., provides 24-hour access to laundry services, showers, three meals per day, and housing navigation services. The shelter prioritizes veterans, people 55 and older, and those with disabling conditions.

The shelter was announced a few months ago, after the owner of the space agreed to issue a temporary lease set to expire in March 2021.

The housing services organization Transition Projects will manage the shelter and is partnering with Central City Concern to assist Portlanders.

It's the third winter shelter opened as part of an effort by the Joint Office of Homeless Services and Mayor Ted Wheeler's and Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury's offices to keep houseless citizens sheltered and safe during the pandemic.

"Participants will need a reservation to stay at the shelter," today's announcement says. "Once enrolled, they'll have a bed of their own for as many days as they need. Participants can store their belongings at the shelter and also continue to provide care for their well-behaved and housebroken pets."

One can reserve a space by going to Transition Projects' Resource Center at the Bud Clark Commons, 650 NW Irving St., or by calling 503-280-4700.

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