NOTE: Watch the community conversation live through The Gazette's Facebook above. Reporter Jakob Rodgers is live tweeting from the event. Desktop users can follow his feed to the right of the screen, and mobile users can follow the feed by scrolling to the bottom of the article.

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The final numbers for the 2018 community survey of the homeless population in Colorado Springs are not yet available, but the total number of homeless persons is expected to exceed the 2017 count of 1,415.

The situation has worsened as more Denver metro residents turn south to escape that area's white-hot housing market, pushing prices up in Colorado Springs. That means more people are being pushed into homelessness, and fewer people living on the streets can escape it.

So let's talk about what's being done, and what more can be done.

The Gazette has invited some of the major stakeholders in this fight to gather for a community conversation starting at 6 p.m. Wednesday. We hope to get them talking to each other and talking to us, telling us what new initiatives have been started, listening to our concerns, and maybe, just maybe, brainstorming how we can all synchronize our efforts better.

Mayor John Suthers has agreed to be part of the conversation at the Pinery at the Hill, 775 W. Bijou St. The AARP and Family Promise are co-sponsors of the event, which is open to the public, and we're soliciting questions in advance.

Leave your questions in our comments section. You can also ask your questions on our Facebook page.

A year after the Springs Rescue Mission's multimillion dollar shelter opened, it's routinely at capacity, and the city is back at square one in dealing with burgeoning numbers of homeless.

Other panelists scheduled Wednesday include:

This is a forum that will be focused on solutions rather than problems, so bring your ideas.

See you Wednesday.

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