clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
The Skillman Library Branch downtown
The Skillman Library Branch downtown
Michelle & Chris Gerard

Where to Cool Off For Free During a Detroit Heat Wave

View as Map
The Skillman Library Branch downtown
| Michelle & Chris Gerard

It's a cruel, cruel summer here in Detroit, and there seems to be no end in sight for the heat and humidity that we've experienced. Fortunately, there are some places to go (for free) for residents looking to escape the heat.

The city released a list of Cooling Centers a couple weeks ago. These are mainly library branches and rec centers around the city. We've also added all of these, plus a few of our own favorites to our map.

So short of wandering around Meijer for hours trying to escape the heat, here are a few spots where you can hang out and enjoy a little air conditioning.

Do you have some other suggestions? Let us know in the comments. And keep in mind, these are free places!

Read More

Crowell Recreation Center

Copy Link
313 628-2050 Another city cooling center, Crowell Rec Center is open Monday – Friday from noon - 8 p.m.

Coleman A Young Rec Center

Copy Link
(313) 628-0995 Open Monday – Friday from noon - 8 p.m., this Rec Center is also a city cooling center.

Farwell Recreation Center

Copy Link
In the northeast part of the city, you can stop at Farwell Rec Center. (313) 628-2028 Monday – Friday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Patton Recreation Center

Copy Link
One of the city's cooling centers is Patton. They also have a pool, but you need a membership card to swim. (313) 628-2001 Monday – Friday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Detroit Public Library

Copy Link
The main branch of the library is right across from the DIA. You could spend a whole day visiting buildings representing the best of Detroit (with AC, of course) T, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | Th, F, Sa: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

A photo posted by @lia.greenwell on

Campbell Branch Public Library

Copy Link
Located in Southwest, the Campbell Branch of the public library is another cooling center. (313) 481-1550 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Detroit Public Library - Chaney Branch

Copy Link
Located on Grand River, the Chaney Branch is also a city Cooling Center. (313) 481-1570 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Chase Branch

Copy Link
Located on 7 Mile, this is one of the smaller branches that's also a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1580 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Conely Branch

Copy Link
Another Cooling Center in the city, the Conely Branch is located on Martin St. off Michigan Ave. (313) 481-1590 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Edison Branch

Copy Link
Located on Joy Road, the Edison Branch is also open as a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1720 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Elmwood Park Branch

Copy Link
Located at Lafayette and Chene, the Elmwood Park Branch is a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1730 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Detroit Public Library Elmwood Park Branch

Detroit Public Library - Franklin Branch

Copy Link
The Franklin Branch of the library is located near Gratiot and East McNichols and is also a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1740 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

detroit public library (hubbard branch)

Copy Link
Located on McNichols right off the Lodge, the Hubbard Branch is also a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1750 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Jefferson Branch

Copy Link
Located near the Alger Theater is the Jefferson Branch. (313) 481-1760 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Knapp Branch

Copy Link
Located at the north end of Hamtramck is the Knapp Branch. (313) 481-1770 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Parkman Branch

Copy Link
This impressive branch is located on Oakman Boulevard. (313) 481-1810 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Redford Branch

Copy Link
The Redford Branch also has a community garden! (313) 481-1820 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Sherwood Branch

Copy Link
Located right near the corner of 7 Mile and Livernois, the Sherwood Forest Library branch is one of the city's Cooling Centers. (313) 481-1840 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Skillman Branch

Copy Link
Located right downtown, the Skillman Branch is listed as a Cooling Center in Detroit. (313) 481-1850 M, T, W, Th, F: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

David Whitney Building

Copy Link
It's one of our favorite lobbies downtown and it has AC. This would be a good place to stop in, take some pictures, and enjoy the (cool) interior.

Detroit Institute of Arts

Copy Link
Free to residents of Wayne, Macomb, and Oakland Counties, now is as good of a time as ever to visit the DIA. Not only does it have impressive collections, but it also has AC. Open Tues-Thurs 9am-4pm, Friday 9am-10pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am-5pm.

Happy first day of summa!

A photo posted by Detroit Institute of Arts (@diadetroit) on

Detroit Historical Museum

Copy Link
Learn about Detroit history! The Detroit Historical Museum is also free! Find some Pokemon while you're there. Open Tuesday-Friday 9:30am-4pm, Saturday & Sunday 10am-5pm.

Crowell Recreation Center

313 628-2050 Another city cooling center, Crowell Rec Center is open Monday – Friday from noon - 8 p.m.

Coleman A Young Rec Center

(313) 628-0995 Open Monday – Friday from noon - 8 p.m., this Rec Center is also a city cooling center.

Farwell Recreation Center

In the northeast part of the city, you can stop at Farwell Rec Center. (313) 628-2028 Monday – Friday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Patton Recreation Center

One of the city's cooling centers is Patton. They also have a pool, but you need a membership card to swim. (313) 628-2001 Monday – Friday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Detroit Public Library

The main branch of the library is right across from the DIA. You could spend a whole day visiting buildings representing the best of Detroit (with AC, of course) T, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | Th, F, Sa: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

A photo posted by @lia.greenwell on

Campbell Branch Public Library

Located in Southwest, the Campbell Branch of the public library is another cooling center. (313) 481-1550 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Detroit Public Library - Chaney Branch

Google Maps
Located on Grand River, the Chaney Branch is also a city Cooling Center. (313) 481-1570 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Chase Branch

Google Maps
Located on 7 Mile, this is one of the smaller branches that's also a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1580 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Conely Branch

Google Maps
Another Cooling Center in the city, the Conely Branch is located on Martin St. off Michigan Ave. (313) 481-1590 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Edison Branch

Google Maps
Located on Joy Road, the Edison Branch is also open as a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1720 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Elmwood Park Branch

Detroit Public Library Elmwood Park Branch
Located at Lafayette and Chene, the Elmwood Park Branch is a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1730 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Detroit Public Library Elmwood Park Branch

Detroit Public Library - Franklin Branch

Google Maps
The Franklin Branch of the library is located near Gratiot and East McNichols and is also a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1740 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

detroit public library (hubbard branch)

Google Maps
Located on McNichols right off the Lodge, the Hubbard Branch is also a Cooling Center. (313) 481-1750 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Jefferson Branch

Google Maps
Located near the Alger Theater is the Jefferson Branch. (313) 481-1760 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Knapp Branch

Google Maps
Located at the north end of Hamtramck is the Knapp Branch. (313) 481-1770 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Parkman Branch

Google Maps
This impressive branch is located on Oakman Boulevard. (313) 481-1810 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Redford Branch

Google Maps
The Redford Branch also has a community garden! (313) 481-1820 M, W: Noon - 8 p.m. | T, Th, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Sherwood Branch

Google Maps
Located right near the corner of 7 Mile and Livernois, the Sherwood Forest Library branch is one of the city's Cooling Centers. (313) 481-1840 M, W, F: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. | T, Th: Noon - 8 p.m.
Google Maps

Detroit Public Library - Skillman Branch

Located right downtown, the Skillman Branch is listed as a Cooling Center in Detroit. (313) 481-1850 M, T, W, Th, F: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

David Whitney Building

It's one of our favorite lobbies downtown and it has AC. This would be a good place to stop in, take some pictures, and enjoy the (cool) interior.

Detroit Institute of Arts

Free to residents of Wayne, Macomb, and Oakland Counties, now is as good of a time as ever to visit the DIA. Not only does it have impressive collections, but it also has AC. Open Tues-Thurs 9am-4pm, Friday 9am-10pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am-5pm.

Happy first day of summa!

A photo posted by Detroit Institute of Arts (@diadetroit) on

Detroit Historical Museum

Learn about Detroit history! The Detroit Historical Museum is also free! Find some Pokemon while you're there. Open Tuesday-Friday 9:30am-4pm, Saturday & Sunday 10am-5pm.