30-yard dumpster filled with camp trash
A tidying of transient campsites just west of the I-25/Cimarron interchange filled a 30-yard-capacity dumpster last month, but the new procedure for the work went
smoothly, according to Gold Hill Police Commander Kurt Pillard.
The cleanup by city-contracted Keep Colorado Springs Beautiful (KCSB) was the first since city officials, worried about legal challenges, had ordered a halt to the monthly camp “sweeps” in October.
The only complaint from homeless advocates in May was that some of the advance signage - letting the campers know a cleanup was coming - wasn't sufficiently “user friendly,” Pillard said. “We're in the process of reviewing that. But if that's the worst thing we have to worry about, then we're doing all right.”
The May cleanup was focused on the Westside, on public land along the Fountain Creek corridor, where the camps typically crop up. According to Pillard, KCSB scouted the corridor and decided the only area with significant debris was on either side of Highway 24/Cimarron Street between I-25 and Eighth Street.
The work did not include removal of the camps themselves. The city is developing an ordinance that would make it illegal to store private property on public land. Pillard said he plans to talk about the ordinance at a meeting of the Council of Neighbors and Organizations (which has gone on record in support of the ordinance concept), once the city's legal staff has the draft wording ready.
Pillard said the city has not yet scheduled a return to monthly camp cleanups, but is “kind of heading in that direction.” The next one is set for June 27, probably at sites other than the Westside, he said.
Westside Pioneer article