PORTLAND, Ore. — A sign at the edge of the city property says "it takes a village." But park rangers were back Thursday, to say the campers cannot stay at what’s been named the Village of Hope.
Rangers came to give what may amount to a final warning, for people to move out of the unsanctioned long-term homeless camp on city property off Northeast Airport Way.
KGW followed rangers in, as they went to meet with camp leaders.
The site off Northeast Airport way is new; the city just learned of it last Sunday. Campers set plywood platforms on pier blocks to get tents off the ground, in what is a wetlands area. Inside a big tent set up as a kitchen, park rangers showed patience, making another pitch for the group that wants to stay here long-term to move out.
“We still have time for people to make transitions," said Portland Park Ranger Supervisor Vicente Harrison. "After an exclusion is issued we know that there’s a lot of stuff out here, it’s not going to be an immediate thing."
Harrison also told campers that all had shelter beds designated for them when they move out.
Robert Aquino does not want to move. He feels the city should let their camp be part of the answer to the homeless crisis.
“I’m one of the managers here and we’re trying to prove a point that this is a viable solution," Aquino said. "It's a really workable situation."
City leaders said they intend to start moving structures off the natural public area Thursday.