Cleanup begins after downtown parks fenced off - KPTV - FOX 12

Cleanup begins after downtown parks fenced off

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

For five weeks, Chapman and Lownsdale Squares were a village for hundreds of Occupy Portland campers.

Once Portland police removed the last camper from Chapman Park Sunday afternoon, city officials got a close look at the debris protesters left behind. 

Tarps and tents littered the ground, as well as rotting food, piles of garbage and human waste.

Employees from Portland Parks and Recreation will be taking soil samples to test for possible contamination. They could be taking those samples as early as today.

Most the debris has been cleared from Lownsdale Square. Trash, including buckets and coolers from the makeshift camp kitchen, remain at Chapman Square.

Three weeks ago, Parks Commissioner Nick Fish expressed his concern about the long-term effects on the trees in the parks. Protesters had used ropes to attach tarps and tents to the limbs of trees. 

At that time, Fish estimated the cost of restoration at about $19,000. Sunday, Fish said it would take at least a week before the city has completed a full assessment of the damage and the cost of the restoration.

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