By Chris Treadway
Sunday, September 1st, 2013 at 12:37 am in Albany.
The message is out among the population living at the Albany Bulb, and not just by word-of-mouth. It’s even on a makeshift billboard at the intersection of two paths: Be at the meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday. The meeting is the first Albany City Council session after a summer break. The council is expected to hear a presentation on outreach efforts by Berkeley Food and Housing Project and Solano Community Church on their outreach efforts at the bulb.
As Damin Esper wrote this week, “The city has been working to turn the Bulb over to the East Bay Regional Park District as a park. In the past, the park district maintained that the city must address the homeless problem on the Bulb before it will take over the property. It is assumed that a further delay in enforcement of the anti-camping ordinance would further delay negotiations on the park project, which has been in the works for several years.
“The council voted earlier this year to begin enforcement on the Bulb of the city’s anti-camping ordinance. However, the city at the same time entered into a contract with BFHP and Solano Community Church to attempt to transition people living on the Bulb into housing.”
Local lore has it that similar waterfront encampments in Albany date back to at least the Great Depression
The Bulb, a former Bay landfill garbage dump just north of Golden Gate Fields, is now a breezy/windy area of wonderful vistas and campsites that, while all makeshift of salvaged materials, can be quite elaborate. One has what looks like a second story — facing the Golden Gate. None of it is up to any code except that of the residents.
What the city sees as outreach and assistance is viewed quite differently by the residents of the Bulb and their supporters, who plan to be heard at the City Council meeting and have announced a march from the shoreline site to City Hall on Tuesday.
The following news release was issued Friday:
ALBANY RESIDENTS PROTEST MASS EVICTION OF HOMELESS PEOPLE
Over a hundred Albany residents will march from the Bulb to City Hall in protest of a mass eviction of homeless people from the City planned this October.
Albany, CA – For many years, the City has allowed fifty to seventy homeless people to live on the tip of a landfill, known as the “Bulb.” This May, the City Council abruptly voted to evict these residents, effectively driving them out of town. The City has no homeless shelters or affordable housing, nor a plan for developing them, in violation of state law. This Tuesday, Albany’s housed and homeless residents will collectively march to City Hall to demand that the City halt its plan to evict Bulb residents.
WHAT: Albany residents will march from the Albany “Bulb,” a waterfront landfill, to the City Council in protest of the City’s plan to evict approximately 70 homeless residents of the Bulb
WHERE: The march will begin at the entrance to the Albany Bulb (1 Buchanan Street Extension, Albany, CA) and continue along Buchanan Street to the Albany City Hall (1000 San Pablo Ave, Albany, CA).
WHEN: Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013 at 6:00pm. The march to the City Hall will begin at 6:30pm, and the City Council Meeting will begin at 7:30pm.