Campers, neighbors looking ahead to Springwater Trail sweep - KPTV - FOX 12

Campers, neighbors looking ahead to Springwater Trail sweep

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Portland is just three days away from one of the biggest homeless sweeps the city has ever seen as potentially hundreds of people will be kicked off the Springwater Trail Thursday.

A man named Logan who has been living along the trail under tarps for almost two years told FOX 12 Monday that for a lot of people of the trail, emotions are running high.

“It’s high anxiety time, everybody’s a little stressed out,” he said. “Some are more stressed out than others. I’m just taking it one day at a time.”

Logan said he is a last-minute kind of guy so he hasn’t made any plans yet, but he hopes to get into some kind of alternative housing.

There are 14 miles of the Springwater Trail running through the city of Portland, and a spokesperson for Mayor Charlie Hales’ office said that entire stretch will have an increased presence of park rangers and police starting Thursday.

Any property that campers can’t take with them will be moved into storage sites, like one just off the trail at the Clackamas Service Center.  Campers will have 30 days to come pick up their property.

The clean-up of tents and garbage left behind will continue after Thursday into Labor Day weekend, likely extending into the week after.

Steve Spinnett owns a business just off the trail, Steve’s Imports on Southeast 92nd Avenue. He said he’s gotten to know the people living there and has a huge heart for them.

Spinnett said that for the most part, they’re good people who are down on their luck and he’s upset they’re being treated the same way as the few law-breakers and trouble-makers living among them.

“I agree that they cannot stay on the trail and they have to leave the trail one way or another. However, the problem I’m really having is that law enforcement is treating everyone the same,” he said. “The sweep is treating everybody the same.”

The city says some of the people who were living on the trail have already moved out and into shelter ahead of the deadline several agencies will be coming together for the sweep, starting Thursday morning.

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