More in Community:
By Mike Hazlip—
The 3-acre vacant lot at the corner of Antelope and Old Auburn Road approved last month to become the future home of American River Collegiate Academy has a history of homeless activity.
Pastor Greg Kaiser of Antelope Road Christian Fellowship, located next to the site, has organized clean up efforts on the property. He expects development of the new charter school will decrease the transient activity at the vacant site, a move he hopes will also reduce the number of complaints from neighbors.
Police Lt. Michael Wells said last month that the department has worked with code enforcement and the city’s homeless navigator to offer assistance to individuals camping at the property. Wells called it an “on-going” issue and said the city has worked with the property owner to mitigate the issues.
“[Police] have conducted extra patrols in the area, posted it with trespassing notices, and served the property owner with a Notice to Abate the blight issues,” Wells said.
He also said clean up efforts from church volunteers have been a “great success,” but debris and trash as a result of homeless activity quickly return to the site.
The decision to turn the vacant lot into a school is not without controversy due to concerns about increased traffic in the surrounding residential neighborhood, but Kaiser says an increase in one kind of traffic or another is inevitable at the site.
“I think having the land developed will create a slight decrease in transient movement because it won’t be a convenient spot for camping anymore,” Kaiser told The Sentinel in an email. “Of course the school will create some traffic; cars driving precious children to a great school instead of driving them to a lousy one. Pick which kind of traffic you want.”
Thanks for reading The Sentinel. You are either trying to access subscribers-only content or you have reached your limit of 5 free articles per 30 days. Click here to sign in or subscribe.