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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Encampment Update — 12 September 2019

Some days are harder than others. Some days are more rewarding. This week it is a mixture of both.

The lady sighted at the post office last week was indeed the same lady who was there for months and months. Brian Ulf, chair of SHARE, was contacted. Ulf said St. Joseph had put her in a hotel and the money stopped coming. Thus back on the street. She was attacked last Monday by three men. A shopping cart was thrown on her head. She received a gash on her nose. Ulf in the meantime contacted her St. Joseph case worker. Update does not know all the details but she is no longer on the street at the Post Office. It is felt that Ulf secured housing for her and she is safe.

The great news is that Ocean is free of homeless and debris. The pocket park across from Tesuque on Mildred is clear. The encampment at the library is gone.

North Venice Blvd is still clean. There are a couple of cars with people living in them and spilling into the parkway. South Venice Blvd between Pacific and Dell is the place that has collected many tenters.

South Venice between Pacific and Dell

Westminster Senior Center has collected another camper and there were signs that another camper had been there but left. The trailer behind the car was gone. The two guys with the wooden tents were still there.

Hampton, south of Rose, between Rose and Sunset, continues to be the new hot spot.  Suddenly one day it appeared. David Busch and a few others had been near the Rose Cafe and the group on the east side of Hampton have had little fluctuation. Some people said this group across from Gold’s Gym were waiting for bridge housing to open. Others mentioned that they were from Hampton, north of Rose.

Several were asked and two said they had been all over Venice on the streets and did not know anything about bridge housing. One fellow, who apparently knew what bridge housing was, said he would not enter bridge housing under any circumstances.

Hampton, north of Rose, had a couple living in front of the St. Joseph Center stairs on the east side of the street. The campers on the west side were moving so the cleanup could happen.

Third Ave between Rose and Sunset seems to continue to be the Venice hot spot for encampments.  This is where the 2-year-old child was sighted at 10 pm this week. See the story. 

Remember Kenny, from Oklahoma, his wife and his dog Zoeie?  Kenny’s wife said that St. Joseph would have their names on a housing list in the next two days.  She said her birthday was in two weeks and she hoped to be in a place.  I gave her the phone number for SHARE.

Met Rick Swinger on 3rd Ave after the cleanup Friday.  The cleanup included sanitizing the sidewalks and pressure washing them.  Sanitation does not always pressure wash.  Third looked great.  Rick Swinger, who lives near by,  remarked several times that he had not seen it this clean in some time.

East side

West side

Fourth Ave showed signs of someone having been on the west side near the gate to Public Storage.

Lincoln Blvd is repopulating since it was cleaned a couple weeks ago.

Staples on the north side has people living between the planters. There is no ADA compliance. The Lincoln part of Staples is clear, except for the stuff left, and the motor homes are gone.

Harding had a couple homeless. One living between the planters and another in the unusable driveway.

Carter was clear. Two of the three homeless individuals on Thatcher were gone. One was re-inhabited and then vacated again.

The scenes change daily and there are still many individuals camping alone. There was one on a park bench at the old post office and a guy on Lincoln  across from the old theatre laying on the sidewalk.

Encampment Update — 5 September 2019

The big changes this week are Ocean Ave and its Venice Blvd surroundings and the Miskon Temple preschool now has an armed guard on Hampton Drive, north of Rose, which is the area Update calls the poster child for street living.

Ocean Ave, including both North and South Venice Blvd, have gotten worse. Ocean Ave has moved onto the private property part. Update was told that Claudia Martin, city attorney for area says that new “No Trespassing” signs are not necessary but should include the area from fence to sidewalk.

North Venice Blvd is still struggling to keep the ADA requirement. At one time there was a hammock swinging from a couple of posts. Marie still meets to pack up the van with cans from the previous night.

South Venice is growing in encampments. South Venice Blvd to Dell is growing and the trash across the street is not helping the area look good. One man, who speaks with a foreign accent, is very volatile. People use both the parkway and the private property. South Venice to Ocean is also growing but these campers have kept there belongings on the parkway.

Ocean Ave

North Venice Blvd

South Venice Blvd


This man will come after you if he does not like what you are doing or do not belong in the area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Venice Post Office
The Venice post office now has another sitter and it looks like the one who was there before. Brian Ulf, chair of SHARE foundation, found the previous lady a place to stay.

Westminster Senior Center Park
The two guys with the wooden tents are still there. They have moved closer to the entrance of the Center. There is a trailer hooked onto a car but leveled on the east side of the park and there are vans on the south side of the park. If Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell gets his motion regarding 500 feet from a park or school passed by the City Council, these people will be gone.


Hampton, south of Rose, has not changed from last week. The surprise last week was the influx of campers on the west side from the gate at Google to Sunset.  The area at the door is still there but it is growing. East side where Dorothea cleaned the sidewalk is still the same as last week.

 

 

 

 

Hampton Drive, north of Rose, has been the poster child for business and homeless cooperation since the fiasco of more than a year ago on the east side of the street. But now Hampton Drive, north of Rose, on the west side, has an armed guard at the Miskon Tephillo Synagogue entrance to the building and the preschool. One man explained that the guard was not just a safety for the children but for the building, which they felt could be subject to attack. All signage regarding a preschool have been removed.

3rd Ave
East side

West side

Fourth Ave from Rose to Vernon was clear of all encampments.

Lincoln Blvd at Flower
Had only Beast and Jay there. Josh had gone his own way. The place had been cleaned by the Bureau of Sanitation and the people were asked to vacate the area while it was steam cleaned and sanitized. Beast and Jay had allowed one man to sleep in their area that day and they couldn’t wake him. When the police came, they called paramedics who took him to the hospital. Beast and Jay moved while the block was cleaned.

Staples
The encampment on Lincoln anchored by two motor homes has dwindled to one person in the doorway. The north side of Staples has a couple people storing stuff and living on the sidewalk and the planters. There is no ADA compliance.

Lincoln near Washington
The encampment on Lincoln near Washington was gone.

Carter
Looked like the runners settled on Carter at Walgreen’s. There were between 2 and 4 there consistently during the day. The Triangle also has had three single campers on Thatcher. Two campers are on private property– one city property and the other Harbor Crossing. One camper lives out of his car with the doors open to the sidewalk draped with cloth. SLO Javier Ramirez has been notified.

Encampment Update — 22 August 2019

The good news is that no one is on 4th Ave from Rose south to Vernon. Fourth Ave from Rose to Sunset is where the planters were placed and removed and 4th Ave from Sunset to Vernon has had an encampment for sometime. The bad news is that the Ocean and North and South Venice Blvd encampment is growing as is the encampment on Lincoln in front of Staples.

The area of Ocean, North and South Venice Blvd is getting more populated. The brown tarp is still there on Ocean. More tenters have moved to North Venice Blvd. Trash is on both sides. South Venice Blvd to Dell has a couple tenters and South Venice Blvd near Ocean has a few tenters.

Marie has three vans on North Venice Blvd and collects bottles and cans with six helpers during the night. She loads up the vans and takes her haul to La Cienega recycling.

Marie lives in Venice and collects bottles and cans for a living. Luigi (one sitting), I believe, is her helper. He is bilingual; she is not.

They start around 7 pm with a crew of five or more, and they collect bottles and cans until early in the morning. Then Marie loads them in the vans. As soon as they are filled, they are driven to the recycling place.

Westminster Senior Center Park has the same wooden tenters. The people on Main are still gone. They left last week. Hampton, south of Rose where Dorothea was or is, has another camper and one cannot tell whether Dorothea is still there.

Third Ave on the sunny, east side looks like it has filled in more.The west side looks the same. Lincoln Blvd at Flower is about the same but it looked more unkept with the bikes and the party. Beast didn’t recognize me at first. He and Jay had been drinking and were pretty out of it.

The encampment at Staples on Lincoln Blvd is growing and has a car and a van sleeping near by.

North Venice Blvd
Other side of North Venice Blvd with photo taken thru the trash.

Bud from Oklahoma just wanted his picture taken as he passed thru.

Hampton, south of Rose, where Dorothea lived

3rd Ave, east side

3rd Ave, west side
4

4th Ave, south of Rose where the planters were.

4th Ave, south of Sunset and even the grass got cut.

Lincoln Blvd at Flower

Lincoln Blvd in front of Staples

Encampment Update — 15 August 2019

They don’t want to get near Dorothea on Hampton Dr, south of Rose.

Last week it was shown where Dorothea moved all the tenters on Hampton, south of Rose, off the street while she scrubbed it. This she did and no one came back. Thursday there was one tenter but he was a good distance from Dorothea. Dorothea and her husband are in the aqua-colored area to the right. If you’re going to be homeless, keep it clean! Hampton, north of Rose, has been the poster child for keeping it clean.

Ocean Ave and the North and South Venice Blvd seemed to change little with the week. Ocean Ave still has the brown tarp. During filming he is legal; a drive by later and he is illegal with his stuff all over the city property. North Venice Blvd has a bunch of tenters living on the parkway but when “at home” they spread on the sidewalk and the private property to make it impossible to pass, let alone be ADA compliant. The good news is that South Venice Blvd had fewer tenters. The garbage surrounding the area sometimes is astounding and impossible to figure out how it got there.

Overall this week, there were fewer tenters in each encampment and 4th south of Sunset was gone except for the garbage. Encampment on Main was gone.  Staples on Lincoln is growing. The encampment on Lincoln, east side, near Washington is gone. Film of 3rd both sides of the street is provided at the end of the commentary and photos.

When filming 3rd Ave, Andy approached me to find out what I was doing.  Andy was a 29-year-old from Detroit with a skateboard in his hand.  Asked him why he was here and he said he didn’t have a job.  I told him Starbucks was hiring and he vehemently replied that he didn’t want to work and serve rich folks. (At the time I was wondering if my Starbucks cup was visible.)  Told him that Whole Foods was hiring.  That didn’t seem to excite him  either.  He said he had run some auto repair shop at a location where there wasn’t one.  He then said he was thinking about leaving in a couple of months.  He had come from Detroit  in January.  It was assumed he was going home.  He told me that he and others wanted to throw rocks at my car for filming them in public view.  It is amazing how people living on the sidewalks feel they own the street.  They yell at  Sanitation to get off the street.  They yell at the BID people when they clean up the trash.  By the way Sanitation workers clean the street and disinfect it once a week.  BID Clean Team cleans up trash twice a day.  Public Storage pressure washes the east side of the street on Wednesdays.  How can 3rd ever be dirty?

Oh, yes, Andy was concerned about the trash  The trash can just behind him was empty with trash surrounding it on the street.  I said look.  He looked and said he tries to get people to put trash in the cans.  I said that is one can that can be filled up immediately.  He walked away without filling the can.

Ocean Ave

North Venice Blvd

South Venice Blvd

Trash on North Venice Blvd

4th, south of Sunset, is gone except for the debris. One commenter made the statement last week that the guy with the bikes looked like the one who was running a chop shop at Penmar Park.

4th, south of Rose, is the area that captured the headlines for last week. It was totally devoid of tenters and planters. Instead it was filled with garbage across the sidewalk and into the street. Two Clean Team operators from BID were busy bagging. There was certainly no ADA compliance there. The planters were removed in record time, less time than an abandoned mattress, yet it takes privately funded organizations such as BID to keep the sidewalks unobstructed or ADA compliant.

Lincoln Blvd seemed to be about the same.

Individuals continue to branch off.
Lincoln and Venice Blvd

Thatcher and Washington Blvd

East side of 3rd Ave.

West side of 3rd Ave.

Encampment Update — 8, 9 August 2019

Brown tarp is back on Ocean Ave between North and South Venice Blvd. Most of those on Ocean have now moved to South Venice Blvd. The vans are gone from North Venice Blvd. Last week the electricity was cut off.

Geraldo, whom there is no photo of, was on North Venice Blvd with his bottles waiting for the van to pick up the bottles. He said the vans just left the area. He didn’t know where they went. He said he picks up bottles which gives him enough money to eat each day. One fellow, he said, bothers him because he comes at night and makes a big mess. Geraldo was busy cleaning up the mess.

South Venice Blvd

North Venice Blvd

Main St on west side of Westminster Elementary School looks like it has a little van, sidewalk encampment starting. Westminster Senior Center Park is clear except for the two wooden tents.

Main St

Hampton, south of Rose, was a delightful experience. Dorthea moved all sidewalk sitters off the sidewalk. Put the trash in a black plastic on the street and put soap and water on the sidewalk. How clean it was. When asked what she did with all the guys, she said she had them put their stuff on Main. “Look all the grease is gone,” she said happily. She was really pleased with the way the sidewalk looked. She was born and raised in California and use to live just off Abbot Kinney when it was Washington Blvd.

Hampton, south of Rose

Hampton, north of Rose, is still the poster child.

3rd Ave, both the east and the west sides, were filmed this week
West side

East side

4th south of Sunset on the west side of the Skills Center seems to grow and then decrease.

4th, south of Sunset

Lincoln Blvd near Rose has fewer tents or they are smaller. Beast was not up yet and didn’t see Josh or Jay.

Lincoln, south of Rose

Lincoln Blvd on the east side near Washington Blvd has the start of a new encampment.

Lincoln Blvd, near Washington Blvd

Encampment Update — 1 August 2019

Ocean Ave between North and South Venice Blvd is back to its “Welcome to Venice” scene. Maybe there were two days of it being clear. North Venice has not improved and there are two tent areas on South Venice Blvd, one with a barbecue close by.

City ran wires in the Farmers’ Market area cutting off the ground electricity that the homeless were using to charge scooters. Jim Murez, manager of Farmers’ Market, was concerned about trimming the trees for the wires. It looks like a temporary situation.

North Venice Blvd

The two wooden tents at the Westminster Senior Center were still there. There was another possible tent area on the south side of the park. Looked like there was one motor home and a van parked at the park.

The elementary school across the street had a couple of vans and whether there were live-ins in it or not was not known.

Hampton, south of Rose, is about the same. Hampton, north of Rose, is the same and is the poster child for taking care of the homeless and the streets.

A video was done of both sides of 3rd Ave.
East side of 3rd Ave.

West side of 3rd Ave.

Fourth Ave, south of Sunset, had fewer tenters. Fourth Ave, south of Rose, had two tenters. They had none last time.

Lincoln Blvd had fewer tenters. One tenter left and left a mess. Three guys who were there said they would clean it up after tonight. One spokesman said the people came back last night and took some stuff so they want to wait another night before removing it all.

Left to right: Josh, Jay and the Beast.

Had the opportunity to talk to three young men on Lincoln. While we were talking a car drove up and diver was looking to buy heron. The kids didn’t have any and weren’t into selling drugs, they said, so guy moved on. Beast, the spokesman for the three, told me he had several physical problems, such as epilepsy and neuropsy. He had been a gymnast at one time. Josh was from Iowa and Jay was from Texas. The Beast was from Hawaii but had lived in California before.

They first settled at the beach but living on the sand could cost them a $1200 dollar ticket so they moved off the sand and ended up on Lincoln, after moving from Ralph’s on Lincoln. They call the police “Baby Blue.”

People are continuing the individual camping. Staples on the Lincoln side looked like it had one or two tenters. Harding had stuff stowed next to the planters. Coeur d’Alene had stuff dropped off at the planter boxes. A guy is still camped out on Thatcher at the yard. Carter comes and goes with people hanging. Assume this is a drug contact point.

Encampment Update — 25 July 2019

The main news for this update is that Ocean Ave between North and South Venice Blvd is clear. There was a little “stuff” there Thursday but Friday that was gone too. The continuous eye-sore is gone!

Lincoln Blvd and 4th, south of Sunset, have both grown in tenters. Fourth, south of Rose, is clear. The others have remained about the same. In general things are better than a couple months ago. Many homeless are individual-camping.

Just to let the reader know that the homeless encampments for Venice have not ceased, videos of 3rd Ave have been added at the end of the story. The Encampment Update never has covered 3rd or Ocean area.

North Venice has become the home for the working van and car owners. Bikes and scooters are in the street parking area and the generator to charge them is hanging out in the street between vans. Then there is the ever present van that collects bottles. The other side of the street has a pile of “stuff.” There were two separate tenters on South Venice Blvd.

Jim Murez head of Farmer’ Market was told that they are going to string above-ground wires across the market area. Right now wires are underground but because of the homeless tapping the now underground electricity, they plan to run above-ground wires. The running of wires will cause the trees to be trimmed beyond beauty and health. Murez asked: “Why don’t they put a lock on the area where the homeless access the electricity?”

There were two campers on Main Street across from Westminster Senior Center Park — one was in a car and the other had his bags assembled at the curb.

Hampton Drive, both north and south of Rose, looked the same.

Fourth Ave, south of Sunset, is growing. Fourth, south of Rose, was clear.

Homeless were assembled on 7th Ave in the private property area for some unknown reason.

Lincoln Blvd has grown. There are eight to 10 tenters there.

There are many individuals throughout Venice, separate from encampments, on the sidewalks or wherever they find a place to crash. Usually they move on. Sometimes they collect others. Sometimes when they collect others, they move on.

The first video is the east side of 3rd and the second is the west side of 3rd. Third Ave is one block long, from Rose to Sunset.

Encampment Update — 11 July 2019


Welcome to Farmer’s Market! Where are the signs that say you cannot camp on private property?

Ocean Ave between North and South Venice Blvd has not changed. North Venice has people camping in vans and cars and the vans are doing business in the street charging scooters. More tenters have come. Two tenters were on South Venice Blvd between Pacific and Dell.



It has been a couple of weeks since the last Encampment Update. Summarizing situation … Ocean Ave has gotten a little worse. Other than that, in general, the encampments have decreased in size. Only the wooden tents were at the Westminster Senior Center park. Hampton Drive, south of Rose, had only the one encampment across from Google. It was totally noncompliant. Hampton Drive, north of Rose, was clear meaning that all were up and out and the place had been cleaned. Fourth, south of Sunset, had a couple tenters, one of whom was not compliant. Fourth, south of Rose, had a couple tenters. Lincoln Blvd at Flower had only one tenter. One lady said the others had gone.

Carter near Lincoln had a couple hanging; homeless hang at the corner and make it a point to distribute trash all over the street.  Thatcher at Washington is an exception.  It has grown this week.  It use to be just one fellow but now it is more.

 

The encampments today are in close proximity to 3rd Ave.  The encampments that caused so much trouble are gone.  The most recent at Coeur d’Alene is gone.  Remember 7th Ave, Penmar Park, the Thai alley, Staples, Harding, Venice Way just to name a few?  These were tragedies.  They are gone because neighbors took action.

Hampton Drive, south of Rose

Fourth, south of Sunset

Fourth, south of Rose

Lincoln Blvd

New System for Homeless Camp Cleanups Approved by City Council Members

City Council members have agreed to overhaul the now existent system for cleaning up the encampment sites. The details are not clear at present but the system will change as follows:

1) The Bureau of Sanitation will assign crews to certain sites and keep them assigned to that site so all encampment members can become accustomed to the Sanitation crew members.

2) Sites will be more “scheduled” than occasioned by complaints.

3) Police will be present to protect the Bureau of Sanitation crew members. (This is under further review as prompted by groups such as Services Not Sweeps and LA Community Action Group.

4) More trash bins or cans will be available.

5) Mobile restrooms.

6) Sanitation must stop illegal dumping. Illegal dumping, it is claimed, amounts to 80 percent of the trash picked up. The City initiated a single provider garbage system that is considerably more costly than the previous system and it has been said that businesses are dumping their garbage at homeless sites.

Rick Swinger has reported and photographed many (crates) of food (old, throwaway) items dumped on 3rd Ave site and Ocean Front Walk. Many feel this is a humanitarian endeavor but it is not. Also 3rd Ave is next to Public Storage so many people put unwanted items on the street for pickup. Once this writer was talking with a couple on 3rd, left to talk with others, came back to original couple and found a roll of carpet next to them. Asked the couple how carpet got there and the couple replied that a guy in a truck stoped and dumped it.

Rick Swinger has mentioned that the abandonment of furniture of 3rd could be eliminated by Public Storage if they would put a bin for unwanted items on their property. But storage would not want to do that because what was precious and stored, becomes junk in six months. So Public Storage would have to pay for having to have the stuff picked up, Same price others who are dumping refuse to pay.

LA Times article.

Encampment Update — 21 June 2019

The good news is that the encampment at Coeur d’Alene is gone but it looks like the inhabitants are looking and squatting in the Naples alley and Harding at the planters.  Time will tell how that resolves.  The encampment was totally non compliant and just east of the elementary school.

 

At Harding, talked with George and Darryl  who both said they were on Harding temporarily.  They didn’t know where they were headed.  George was from Washington state.  Gave them the phone number for SHARE!.

Another piece of good news is that Kenny, his wife and dog Joey, are gone from the Lincoln encampment. They supposedly have a motel room.

The bad news is that it looks like a gang-type group has formed on Andalusia at Abbot Kinney. A neighbor, Ben, says they sleep there so it is an encampment but it looks and sounds like a gathering of thugs. Ben says they take over the alley at night too. It was reported last week, but when observed, three were sitting and non combative. Friday all were moving and combative and there were six to seven young men there with their dogs. Saturday there were gals there with the guys and it looked closer to 10 individuals. They were trying to keep the sidewalk passable but it was loud and intimidating. They have been reported to the police.

Ocean Ave between North and South Venice Blvd is the same. There was a row of vans on North Venice Blvd with people stowing stuff in between.

The not so good news is that areas parallel with 3rd, such as Hampton and 4th, are slowly growing and that is probably caused by people unsatisfied with 3rd trying other places. Hampton, south of Rose, is growing on both sides of the road. Hampton, north of Rose, is still the poster child.  Fourth is growing south of Rose and extending to south of Sunset. Neither parts of 4th are as concentrated or as noncompliant as Hampton.

Lincoln is smaller without Kenny and his family.

Westminster Senior Center park definitely has two encampments and that doesn’t count the two guys with the wooden tents.