June 30

Maple Leaf homeless camp is gone

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A police officer and crews from the state Department of  Transportation removed the homeless camp in Maple Leaf above Interstate 5 late Wednesday morning. This “Notice and Order to Remove” is all that’s left.

A reader, Thor, notified police, the Transportation Department and us two weeks ago. “The other day my family walked to Rainbow Point park and noticed a homeless camp right next to the park, on the slope above I-5,” Thor wrote. “The location is near the top of a slope southwest of the intersection of NE 75th St and NE Banner Place.”

The Transportation Department said they will remove such camps, but must coordinate with police. The notice was posted June 25. “This is not an authorized area for storage or shelter,” it says. “All material will be disposed of in 72 hours.”

A half-dozen readers commented on our original story. Carl wrote: “That’s the ‘homeless bike dude’ …  he’s been there for years, but used to live a little further north on the other side of I-5. He is a fixture in Maple Leaf/Roosevelt/GreenLake trolling local arterials for cig. butts.”

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Sara W

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  1. If it’s illegal for me to set up camp in a public park why should the law not apply equally to all?

  2. @Claire:

    Calling the police is treating them as human as everyone else. It isn’t about trash in improper places, it’s about “storage and shelter” in an unauthorized location. The people of this city need to follow its laws — laws that are (for the most part) in place for sound reasons.

    That said, I do applaud any desire to reach out to our neighbors and help those in need. I wonder if there is a way that we can contact the homeless bike dude and get him into a shelter.

  3. Lets not forget that these people are members of our community too. If they are leaving trash lets ask them to clean up. I don’t see how calling the police is an appropriate response. People who are in need have chosen our neighborhood to set up camp. Lets show them the same respect we would show our neighbors instead of treating them like they are less than human.

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