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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — An announcement about the future of the Cranston Street Armory is expected to be made on Friday.
A 24-hour warming station moved into the armory late last year to provide temporary shelter to the homeless during the winter months.
Last month, the state said the armory would be closing by the end of April.
R.I. Housing Secretary Stefan Pryor and Amos House CEO Eileen Hayes have said the armory won’t become a permanent homeless shelter.
Residents have repeatedly expressed concerns over increased drug use and litter in the neighborhood and in Dexter Park — right across the street from the armory.
Pryor said he recognizes the burden that the warming station has placed on the neighborhood, which is one of the reasons why he doesn’t want to see the armory become a permanent shelter.
A spokesperson for Providence Mayor Brett Smiley released a statement Thursday reading in part, “while the city has supported operations of the Cranston Street Armory since December with additional police, behavioral healthcare supporters, and parks maintenance, the armory does not have the infrastructure needed to safely house people into the summer.”
Smiley’s office went on to say it also doesn’t support an extension to use the armory as a warming shelter past this weekend.
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