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City Unveils 2024 "Stay Cool Jax" Plan, Cooling Centers Activated on June 26

June 26, 2024
JACKSONVILLE, Florida, June 26, 2024 – Earlier this week, the City of Jacksonville unveiled its 2024 Cooling Center Contingency Plan, called “Stay Cool Jax”. It is a critical component of the City of Jacksonville’s proactive efforts to safeguard public health during periods of extreme heat.  
 After launching an inaugural cooling center effort in 2023, various City departments and partner agencies collaborated closely to expand Cooling Center operations across Jacksonville, ensuring greater relief and accessibility for the entire community.

Activation Thresholds: Cooling Centers will be activated under two maximum heat index thresholds:
1. The National Weather Service (NWS) issues a Heat Advisory for Duval County for three or more consecutive days. The maximum heat index is expected to be between 108°F and 112°F. This threshold was reached on June 26.

2. The National Weather Service (NWS) issues an Excessive Heat Warning for one or more days. The maximum heat index is expected to reach 113°F or higher.

Monday-Saturday Locations: For extreme heat events on Mondays through Saturdays, Cooling Centers will be activated at various City of Jacksonville (COJ) facilities under normal hours of operation. These facilities will be open regardless of whether activation thresholds are met, and they include:
  • All COJ Public Libraries (21 libraries): Accessible and air-conditioned spaces.
  • All COJ Community Centers (24 centers): Available in multiple neighborhoods.
  • All COJ Pools (29 pools) and Splash Pads (16 pads): Provide immediate cooling relief.
Visit Jacksonville.gov/StayCoolJax or JaxReady.com/StayCoolJax to find a cooling center location near you and for more information.

Sunday Locations: For extreme heat events on Sundays and holidays, two main Cooling Centers will be specifically activated from 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM:
  • Main Library (303 N. Laura St.)
  • Legends Center (5130 Soutel Dr.)
Transportation: Additionally, free transportation to Cooling Centers will be provided by the Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) on designated Heat Emergency days. Residents must tell the bus driver that they are heading to a cooling center to receive free service. By offering free rides, JTA will help remove transportation barriers, allowing more community members to access the Cooling Centers, and in turn, stay cool and safe.

For additional information on Stay Cool Jax, visit Jacksonville.gov/StayCoolJax or  JaxReady.com/StayCoolJax, which features details on the locations, hours of operation, and amenities for all Cooling Centers throughout Jacksonville. The site also provides essential guidelines for staying safe during extreme heat events, including precautions to take, recognizing heat-related illnesses, and tips for ensuring the safety of your pets. Additionally, it offers valuable resources for community partners, including ready-to-distribute heat-related safety information and support for coordinating outreach efforts to ensure vulnerable populations are aware of available resources.