Justice Unhoused

Kzoo homeless encampment triples in size

Homeless advocates say the encampment has grown as people flock from other areas of the city.

Kalamazoo’s largest encampment for the unhoused has tripled in size since April – a sign that the county’s homelessness problem isn’t going away anytime soon.

The so-called Ampersee Encampment is located in an otherwise vacant plot of land next to the Kalamazoo River on the city’s east side. More than 100 tents are crowded into a space not much larger than a city block.

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The encampment was relatively small in April. But it began to grow after a temporary shelter in an old hotel closed for renovations and the city shut down another encampment in the Edison Neighborhood.

The size of the population is leading to problems, according to people interviewed by MLive.

“It’s worse. The drugs, fighting, trash … people making threats – people with weapons,” said one man who declined to be identified.

There are several efforts underway to provide more permanent resources for the unhoused. The aforementioned hotel is being turned into small apartments for people with nowhere else to go. Another old hotel is providing temporary shelter through July.

Still, people worry about what will happen once the weather turns cold again.

You can read the full story here.

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