Anchorage Assembly passes resolution requiring plan to move people out of Sullivan Arena mass homeless shelter

The Anchorage Assembly in a unanimous vote Tuesday passed a resolution requesting that the acting mayor’s administration come up with a transition plan for the emergency homeless shelter at Sullivan Arena.

The federal FEMA money currently funding the shelter will run out by the end of September and the facility is needed for the city’s new junior hockey team, said Assembly member Christopher Constant, a sponsor of the resolution.

The city set up the emergency shelter last year in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It has been consistently at full- or near-capacity for the duration of the pandemic, the resolution states.

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Assembly member Meg Zaletel, another sponsor of the resolution, said the city needs to find permanent housing solutions for the people in the shelter.

The resolution requires that the mayor’s office come up with a transition plan by April 15 and that it reports to the Assembly every two weeks until the end of October.

Acting Mayor Austin Quinn-Davidson’s administration will hand off the responsibility when a new mayor takes office on July 1, following the April 6 election.

“This just gives us some really great insight, and the opportunity to be engaged, tracking what’s happening,” Zaletel said of the resolution. “And as we know, our constituents are generally very concerned about issues related to homelessness, and this will give us the opportunity to be able to tell them what’s happening and come along with us as we move through this transition.”

Emily Goodykoontz

Emily Goodykoontz is a reporter covering Anchorage local government and general assignments. She previously covered breaking news at The Oregonian in Portland before joining ADN in 2020. Contact her at