A new, City of Rochester-sanctioned homeless encampment is now open. It opened quietly three weeks ago, near West Broad Street. This, after the homeless community spent months battling the city over a “Tent City” on South Avenue.
Tent City is no more, but this is the new homeless camp on Industrial Street. There’s about 20 people that live here. They are just trying to get by with the help of the city, donations, and one another.
“It’s been so good so far. We’re going into our third week here,” explained Tex, a person who lives at the camp.
On a rainy day like today, Tex, is glad his tent, his home, has changed locations.
“We get trash pick up everyday. They brought in some porta-potties; Lovely [Warren] has been out here three times herself,” he said.
Instead of being on the dirt ground, mulch was laid down. And the area is fenced in to allow privacy. This new homeless camp’s land was paid for by the City of Rochester. The City of Rochester says Spectrum helped pay for mulch, porta-potties, and other necessities. The camp itself, will be self funded by the homeless and homeless advocates.
“It will hold the moisture, but we have all of our tents up on pallets and plywood, so it keeps all the mulch dry and that creates heat too,” Tex said.
Michael Tandoi’s business, Tandoi Asphalt & Sealcoating is just about across the street from the encampment; something he’s not too worried about.
“I go over there and check on them daily. I stop over, made friends with all of them,” said Tandoi.
Tandoi and his friend, Shawn Cannon, from Bricks Landscaping, decided to take it a step further. They not only donated fifteen tents, sleeping bags and winter wear, but they spent a night in the camp to spread awareness.
“It was cold. When you were in that tent you were by yourself, there was no electricity, no light,ect.” added Tandoi.
Tandoi says it was a radical experience, but his deed pulled in even more donations from the camp.
Something Tex adds, the homeless need, as winter approaches.
The homeless are always looking for donations. To do that, you can give those to the Open Door Mission. The link is below:
Shelters such as the Open Door Mission have additional beds during the winter. However, some people prefer to remain in their tents. This area was created in response to those requests.