COLUMBIA, S.C. — Columbia's Inclement Weather Center is now open when temperatures drop below 40 degrees to provide safe shelter for adults, 18-years or older, who are experiencing homelessness.

The center is operated through a partnership among the City of Columbia, United Way of the Midlands, Transitions, and Salvation Army of the Midlands.

It opens annually, but this year guests can catch the COMET to the shelter's location at 191 Calhoun Street.

Here's how it works:

Between 5:45 PM and 7:00 PM, catch the COMET from COMET Central at 1745 Sumter Street using bus stop #1122, Route 7. 

COMET Central
COMET Central bus station at 1745 Sumter Street.
Kayland Hagwood

Shuttles will rotate every 15 to 20 minutes. Guests should arrive no earlier than 4:45 pm to ride.

No one is allowed to walk to the center for safety, so guests should plan to catch the bus. 

COMET bus
A COMET bus driving away from COMET Central station on Sumter Street.
Kayland Hagwood

Once guests arrive to the center on Calhoun Street, they're provided a hot dinner and breakfast, with showers also available.

"This gave about 100 people last weekend a safe place to be out of the elements and we expect much, much more this weekend when temperatures drop colder," Jennifer Moore, Sr. Director with United Way, said.

Columbia Inclement Weather Center
Inclement Weather Center
Kayland Hagwood

The center will close every morning at 7:00 AM.

The decision to open the center will be made daily at 1:00 p.m. To find out if it is open on a particular night, call 211.