City plans to remove Laurelhurst Park homeless encampment

Published: Sep. 21, 2022 at 4:59 PM PDT
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PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - A homeless encampment at Laurelhurst Park is set to be removed after the Portland City Attorney’s Office received a letter from a lawyer.

The 20+ page legal document says it’s representing neighbors and that the trees above the encampment in the park aren’t safe. Specifically, on Southeast Oak Street and goes into detail about more than a dozen trees, saying an arborist report shows branches and limbs could fall off and severely hurt someone.

The Portland Parks & Recreation department says the city arborist inspected the area visually and from a distance, noting that one tree should be removed for safety concerns, but that there was no immediate danger.

Neighbors in the area say they didn’t know about the letter, or who sought legal counsel but say the area has become unsafe due to encampments and don’t mind the camp being cleared.

The neighborhood association says it has nothing against those experiencing homelessness but that it’s an issue that needs to be addressed for everyone’s safety.

“Previously the story was, ‘Oh this wealthy neighborhood is picking on the poor people who can’t afford housing,’ and that’s not true. We’ve always been so consistent in our messaging. Yeah we don’t feel safe and we don’t feel that they’re safe either,” said TJ Browning.

As of now, there is no set date as to when the area will be cleared, but postage of it will be done this week.

This story is still developing and as FOX 12 gets more information on the clearing, we’ll continue to keep you updated.