Homeless encampment along busy avenue heading into Waikiki continues to grow
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A homeless encampment continues to grow along a bustling avenue heading into Waikiki.
City spokesman Jesse Broder Van Dyke said the city is well aware of the growing encampment along Kalakaua Avenue mauka of Kapiolani Boulevard. In fact, he said enforcement crews go there routinely.
None of the homeless wanted to talk on camera, but said they have figured out a way to skirt enforcement. They are out by 7:00 a.m. and come back when it's dark when enforcement crews aren't working.
Broder Van Dyke said they are aware of their strategy and that's what makes sweeping this area so difficult.
"Ever since the mayor did the sweep up of Kakaako, we've been seeing a significant increase of homeless in our community," said Raymond Lalosin, a nearby property manager.
It's just one of the areas Honolulu's homeless population is now flocking to.
Lalosin said Tuesday night's set up of about nine people was actually very small compared to most nights because of a downed pole that attracted city workers, police officers, and traffic.
"It actually ballooned up to like 24 to 30 tents that started from Makaloa all the way down to Kapiolani towards the Convention Center," Lalosin said.
Lalosin said he wants the city to address the issue quickly because he has already found 30 to 40 needles on and around his properties and he doesn't want anyone getting hurt.
"We know it's hard. Everybody is having a hard time, but the issue here is…overall like for me and my tenants…is their safety and that's what their concerns are," he said.
Ever since a federal judge ordered the city to stop destroying most property picked up during homeless sweeps back in November, Broder Van Dyke said there has been no halt in enforcement. He said crews are still going out five days a week.
Copyright 2015 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.