Anaheim officials cleared out a homeless encampment near La Palma Park Saturday, one day after a similar operation at another city park.
“Today was smooth, as yesterday was as well,” spokesman Mike Lyster said after city workers cleared the small encampment in an alleyway just north of the park at Harbor Boulevard and La Palma Avenue.
Workers helped 12 people to a new emergency shelter, at State College Boulevard just north of Orangewood Avenue near Angel Stadium, that was built in about two weeks, Lyster said.
Lyster said the encampment near La Palma Park had peaked recently at about 40 tents, and 20 people were moved from the location on Thursday and Friday. The transients were given a 10-day notice, he said.
On Friday, the city cleared out an encampment at Maxwell Park that had about 75 people living under tents there at its peak. The city helped 65 transients from the park at 2655 W. Orange Ave. under the roof of the new shelter, which has 200 single beds, a large-screen TV and showers, Lyster said.
Another 10 from elsewhere were also placed in the new shelter, Lyster said, bringing the total occupancy there to about 103 people.
The city has reached a settlement in a federal lawsuit, which allows officials to first try to convince transients to take advantage of shelters before arresting them if necessary. A recent federal appellate court ruling prohibits officials from arresting transients if they lack enough shelter beds for them.
U.S. District Judge David O. Carter, who is overseeing the settlement of the lawsuit which seeks to prevent the enforcement of anti-camping ordinances, was on hand to monitor the work at Maxwell Park and to inspect the new shelter, Lyster said.
City officials “power washed” the park after clearing out the homeless, Lyster said.
“It’s really restored to how it’s been,” Lyster said. “And most of the people went off to a better place at the shelter.”
The city is working to provide 325 new beds as part of the federal lawsuit settlement. The work on the new shelter beds is expected to be done by late January or mid-February, Lyster said.
The city is expanding the Salvation Army facility at 1300 S. Lewis St. to include 224 beds. Another shelter will be installed in the Piano Empire store at 3035 E. LaMesa St., which is closing and is across the street from the Bridges at Kraemer Place homeless facility.
The piano store project will feature 101 beds, Lyster said.
The more long-term project is a permanent facility the city will open with the Salvation Army that “could house up to 600 people with everything under one roof,” Lyster said.