Grand Prairie resident Shantel Lankston drove more than 30 minutes to Fort Worth just to cool down.

Cooling centers in Fort Worth

The city of Fort Worth opened three cooling centers to help residents beat the heat. They are:

  • Como Community Center, 4600 Horne St.
  • Northside Community Center, 1800 NW 18th
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center, 5565 Truman Drive

She joined other residents at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center on June 28 to learn more about the resources the city offers to beat the heat. The city of Fort Worth and Reliant Energy hosted an event to inform attendees on ways they can get help with their energy bills and receive free air conditioners. 

Lankston had good reason to seek help: Her apartment has a broken air conditioner and has been 85 degrees in recent days.

“They said they fixed it, but I can’t tell,” Lankston said.

Reliant spokesperson Sandee Treptow reminded residents to call the free 2-1-1 statewide hotline for financial assistance on utility bills. No one should have their air conditioner off for fear of the electric bill, she said. 

The city of Fort Worth offers financial assistance to help residents from lower-income households with their electricity bills. The city also offers air conditioning units.

Handley resident Beverly Alaman said she’s almost 80 and is getting a little behind on electric bills. Alaman filled out a form to get some help with her bill.

“It really helps out when you think of all the other bills you have to pay for,” she said. 

Handley resident Beverly Alaman attended a meeting to learn how to stay cool this summer on June 28, 2023, at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Fort Worth. (Marcela Sanchez | Fort Worth Report)

Alaman has a relative living in her garage turned bedroom. The room gets really hot in the summers and cold in the winters. She talked to officials about her options for an air conditioner.

Craig Trojacek, Fort Worth Fire Department spokesperson, reminded residents about how to avoid heat-related illnesses, like heat stroke and dehydration. Wearing light-colored and baggy clothing and water consumption should always be a top priority, he said. 

Trojacek emphasized residents should not wait until they’re thirsty to drink water. Once thirsty a person is already dehydrated.  

Mayor Pro Tem Gyna Bivens encouraged attendees to spread the message about the free assistance to help stay cool this summer.

“We all know someone right now who’s afraid they’re house is going to get too hot,” Bivens said. 

Marcela Sanchez is a reporting fellow for the Fort Worth Report. Contact her at or via Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.

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Marcela Sanchez is a 2023 summer reporting fellow. She’s a North Texas native pursuing a master's in journalism, media and globalization from Aarhus University in Denmark and Charles University in the...