Ride to a Cooling Center for Free: July 12-15, 2024

Posted on July, 12 2024

Cooling Center Alert

DART will provide free fixed-route and Paratransit rides to approved cooling centers in Polk County from Friday, July 12 through Monday, July 15. 

Temperatures and heat index readings are forecast to be above 90 degrees during that time, with little overnight relief from the heat expected. 

To access a cooling center, you should identify a location near you and the bus route to get there. When you board the bus between Friday and Monday, tell the driver you're heading to a cooling center. Notify the driver when you need to exit the bus at the stop nearest the cooling center.

Polk County has a list of approved cooling centers here.

Paratransit-approved bus riders can request a ride to a cooling center by calling DART Customer Service at 515-283-8100.

DART will also offer free rides to Central Iowa Shelter Services (CISS) and Bethel Mission locations.


Anyone is at risk for heat-related illnesses, including heat exhaustion and heat stroke. This is especially true for young children, older adults, people with chronic health conditions and anyone spending significant time outdoors.

  • Be proactive. Don't wait until you are feeling tired or dehydrated. Heat-related illnesses can become dangerous quickly. Drink plenty of water and seek shelter early in the day before temperatures rise to their highest levels.
  • Find a center near you. Look at the list of approved emergency centers so you're aware of the safest places to be during extreme heat.
  • Plan your trip. You can use the Trip Planner tool on the MyDART app or at ridedart.com to find how to get to the cooling center closest to you. Type in the location you are traveling from and the cooling center address to see options for riding the bus to get there.
  • Let us know. As your board the bus, tell the driver which approved cooling center you're heading to so they can give you a ride for free.
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