Seattle mayor issues emergency order for 2 RV 'safe lots'

Seattle's mayor makes a major move to create more room for the homeless. Monday afternoon he issued an executive order to create two new safe parking lots for people living in their car or recreational vehicle.

SEATTLE -- Mayor Ed Murray issued an emergency order Tuesday to expedite the creation of two safe lots for homeless people who live in RVs or cars. The lots will be located at Ballard's old Yankee Diner and in Delridge at West Marginal Way and Highland Park Way SW. 

The two lots are expected to open in 30 days and will each have an estimate 50-vehicle capacity. Both sites will have sanitation and garbage service, and residents will be expected to follow a code of conduct that prohibits violence and the use of drugs.

Murray said that while the permanent locations are set up, three temporary street parking locations will be set up in Ballard, Interbay and SoDo.

Seattle Public Utilities owns the Ballard location at Shilshole Avenue NW and 24th Avenue NW. Seattle Department of Transportation is negotiating with the state DOT to buy the Delridge location.

Earlier Tuesday, councilmember Sally Bagshaw said talks were underway with land owners to host a possible site.

In a letter to community leaders in the Magnolia neighborhood, Bagshaw told residents meetings are underway with Mayor Ed Murray to determine how to address the RV issue which has prompted several complaints about trash and drug use.

"I still think they are going to keep coming in droves we're not going to have a big enough park," said Doug Kruger, owner of Kruger & Sons Marine Propeller in the Interbay neighborhood. Kruger says he's had issues with theft, and heroin needles left in the street.

At a recent community meeting Seattle police estimated between 175-200 vehicles in the city have someone living inside.

This comes as the mayor declared a state of emergency to fight homelessness and the city is set to spend $50 million this year on the problem. 

The mayor will send the emergency order to the city council for approval.


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