Campers again removed from popular squatting spot in Penticton | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

Would you like to subscribe to our newsletter?

Current Conditions Clear  18.1°C

Penticton News

Campers again removed from popular squatting spot in Penticton

Campers packed up their belongings on March 30 and vacated Esplanade Park in Penticton after being given one month's notice.

Campers at a popular squatting spot in Penticton were forced to move on this week.

About six to eight people had been taking shelter north of Esplanade Park, according to Blake Laven, Penticton’s director of development services.

Community Safety Officers gave them one month’s notice to vacate by March 30.

In an email, Laven said the campers, who were 1.5 kilometres up the east side of Okanagan Lake, co-operated and left the area Wednesday.

Around 9 a.m. that day, a couple of campers could be seen walking away from the park and three men were still hanging out at the beach near the tennis courts, which is the closest road access to Esplanade.

READ MORE: iN VIDEO: A first hand look at Penticton's seamier side

The trio seemed to be comfortable where they were but their gear was packed up and ready to go. One said they would be moving onto their next place shortly.

Everybody camped there had the chance to complete a vulnerability assessment, Laven said, for the benefit of supportive housing and access to other services.

"The bylaws concerning this camp were zoning, fire and life safety, as well as camping,” Laven said, adding that camping there goes against a local bylaw.

"The Esplanade area is always an area of concern for the City due to the sensitive natural habitat, susceptibility to fire and distance from emergency services and remains a problem area."

It wasn't the first time campers were cleared out of that same section of public property, near the southeast corner of Okanagan Lake where a steep hillside meets the beach. It is appealing to transient people as it offers privacy and is only a short walk from the city’s downtown.

The following day, March 31, the beach area was clean and clear of debris. Aside from a few fire pits there was no evidence left behind by the campers. 

READ MORE: Crime and security issues reach beyond Penticton's downtown core

To contact a reporter for this story, email Dan Walton or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above. 

News from © iNFOnews, 2022

  • Popular penticton News
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile