New York City is set to open the first of a series of temporary tent shelter sites on Wednesday to house the influx of thousands of Central and South American migrants, Bloomberg reports.
Located on Randall's Island, between the Bronx and Queens, the 6.4-acre temporary relief center will provide housing, food, water, and COVID tests for up to 500 single adults seeking shelter in New York. After being housed in temporary hotel rooms since their arrival, the city will move the migrants into the large white tents, which hold 1,000 cots, per Bloomberg.
Mayor Eric Adams (D) has been vocal about the city's resources being spread thin by the unexpected influx of migrants in recent months. Over 18,000 asylum seekers have recently arrived in New York City, many of them coming on buses sent by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R). Abbott has sent busloads of asylum seekers to northern sanctuary cities to protest Biden's immigration policies.
Adams recently declared a state of emergency as the city's homeless shelters struggled to accommodate the crowd of displaced migrants. Adams has stated that the city is set to spend over $1 billion by the end of the fiscal year to accommodate the migrants being shipped from border states. After flooding damaged the initial Orchard Beach site, the tents had to be relocated from their original spot in the Bronx. At one point, Adams considered using cruise ships as a temporary solution.
City officials clarified that the tents are meant to be a short-term entry point for migrants, and will house them for 24 to 96 hours. The city is also accommodating 200 families at the Row Hotel in Manhattan, Bloomberg reports.