Homeless camp cleanup underway on Riverside Road

Ministry of Transportation crews were on site Monday morning

Crews are on site cleaning up a homeless camp under the Highway 1 overpass at King and Riverside roads.

Crews are on site cleaning up a homeless camp under the Highway 1 overpass at King and Riverside roads.

Crews cleaned up a homeless camp on Tuesday under the Hwy. 1 overpass at King and Riverside roads, as the Ministry of Transportation took action to clear the site.

The camp has generated a number of public complaints about the amount of accumulating trash, as well as the safety of the overpass due to the occupants digging into the slope.

Doug Wilson, bridge manager with the ministry, said their efforts to clear the site were partly necessary due to complaints from the public and the City of Abbotsford.

The ministry previously said that an inspection showed that there were no threats to the structural integrity of the bridge, and staff were working with the city, Abbotsford Police and local service agencies to handle the issue.

Wilson said the ministry has been monitoring the site “ever since they (the homeless residents) started to tunnel and create erosion issues at the abutment.”

It grew to the point where the ministry had to take action.

Crews will restore the stability of the slope, which will then be covered by rocks.

The ministry, along with the Abbotsford bike patrol, has been communicating with the people in the camp over the past several months, letting them know the clean-up was coming and if they didn’t move they’d be charged with trespassing.

Wilson said service agencies offered alternate shelter for those in the camp.

People found at the site in future will be charged with trespassing, said Wilson.

The other side of the overpass, off Lonzo Road, will also be cleaned up, he said.

 

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