In a game of igneous musical chairs, San Francisco Public Works employees put back six of the “controversial” Clinton Park boulders, meant to thwart the homeless from pitching large tents, back onto a concrete walkway Saturday around 2 p.m., after they were rolled-off sometime Friday.
As SFist reported Saturday, the now-famous anti-homeless boulders — which sit on the two-block alley that runs parallel to Dolores and Valencia, adjacent to a nearby Pet Food Express — continue to be displaced by objectors. Now, for the third time in just over a week, city officials have had to spend the time (and labor costs) to place them back onto the SF sidewalk.
In the latest twist in an escalating, days-long dispute, public works crews hoisted large rocks back onto the sidewalk of a San Francisco alley to impede drug dealers and homeless people from being on the sidewalk. https://t.co/gCxR3QW2DD— San Francisco Chronicle (@sfchronicle) September 28, 2019
Two San Francisco Public Works employees using orange cones, caution tape, and a small crane spent just over an hour Saturday afternoon relocating six of the street-sitting boulders back on to their original cement foundations.
Update: The boulders were again shoved off the sidewalk on Sunday, continuing the tug-of-war.
“We’re working on an authorization process to see which is the best way to move forward,” says Rachel Gordon, a spokesperson for DPW, speaking to the Chronicle. “It’s unfortunate that people are pushing them off the sidewalk and onto the road. It’s not a safe thing to do.”
The two dozen Clinton Park boulders have been the subjected of some protests, both on and offline, with one bicyclist admitting to the Chronicle that he had a hand in Friday’s “rock-rolling” conducted by a gaggle of fellow riders. Gordon tells the paper that this has now happened two previous times, with the rocks ending up in the roadway on September, and again in the middle of last week.
Neither the DPW (Department of Public Works) nor nearby residents have claimed ownership of the two-dozen rocks, though, regardless of who decided to place them there, the guerilla installation is considered inhumane by some.
To boot, Clinton Park neighbor Alex Andrist, who lives just a block from the recently erected row of rocks, also told the Chronicle that the boulders aren’t only narrowing the four-foot-wide sidewalk, but it’s a “mean and ineffective thing to do [to the homeless].”
For some suggestions of more meaningful ways that you can help the Bay Area homeless, check out a piece on The Bold Italic (written by me) titled “Real Ways to Help Homeless People in San Francisco Now.”
Image: @JDBonabike via Twitter