A heatwave is blowing into Buffalo and Western New York over the next several days. With temperatures heading into the mid-to-high 90s this week, it's important that people find ways to stay safe and cool while also being aware of the risk of heat stroke.

With these extreme temperatures expected to linger in the 716 for several days, it's key to ensure that the impact extreme heat can have on people isn't minimized or ignored. To help with those risks, officials from the City of Buffalo have announced they're opening 12 cooling centers throughout Buffalo to help residents stay safe and cool.

Cooling Centers are an important part of our City’s emergency response plan during extreme heat events. It’s especially critical to make sure these sites are open and accessible for houseless individuals, or those without adequate cooling in their homes... At the cooling centers, people will have access to drinking water, a place to cool off, and outlets in case they need to charge their phones.
-Byron Brown, Mayor of Buffalo, New York

It's still very early in the summer weather season, and while the City of Buffalo's public splash pads and wading pools are open, the outdoor public pools have not opened yet. However, the city is opening several cooling centers, which you can stop by to take advantage of their air conditioning and avoid the extreme heat.

Cooling Centers Open In Buffalo

  • Autumnwood Senior Center, 1800 Clinton St.,
  • Delavan Grider Community Center, 877 E. Delavan Ave.,
  • Dorothy J. Collier Community Center, 118 E. Utica St.,
  • Gloria J. Parks Community Center, 3242 Main St.,
  • Hennepin Community Center, 24 Ludington St.,
  • Lincoln Fieldhouse, 10 Quincy St.,
  • Northwest Buffalo Community Center, 155 Lawn Ave.,
  • Peter Machnica Community Center, 1799 Clinton St.,
  • Schiller Park Senior Center, 2057 Genesee St.,
  • Tosh Collins Senior Center, 35 Cazenovia St.,
  • Westside Community Services, 161 Vermont St.,
  • William-Emslie YMCA Senior Center, 585 William St.

Help Keeping Your House Cool Is Available In New York As Well

While these cooling centers are great and are a necessary governmental benefit, you don't need to wait for them to open to find ways to cool off your house when it's excessively hot. If you don't have air conditioning in your house, New York State has a program that may be able to help you obtain an air conditioner or repair the one you own if it's out of order.

The New York State HEAP Cooling Assistance program can help you get a benefit of up to $1,000 for an air conditioner.

You can apply for cooling assistance to buy and install an air conditioner or a fan for your home. Your household is allowed one or the other, and the price cannot be more than $800 with installation for a portable air conditioner, or fan, and not to exceed $1,000 for an existing wall sleeve unit. Like HEAP funding, cooling assistance funds are limited and are distributed on a first-come-first-served basis.
-New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance

You can find more information about this program here.

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Gallery Credit: Dave Fields

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