San Francisco neighbors put boulders on sidewalk to ward off homeless

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Residents of San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood are using boulders to deter the homeless from camping there, according to KTVU.

Neighbors purchased 25 boulders and placed them on the sidewalk of Clinton Park, a residential street west of Market and Dolores streets, in hopes of stopping people from setting up tents there.

"Since the rocks, it has helped," neighbor Ernesto Jerez told KTVU.

Before buying the boulders, residents told KPIX they filed over 300 complaints with the city but nothing had changed.

Homeless advocates have criticized the actions of the residents, who aren’t the first in San Francisco to use boulders to stop homeless encampments.

Caltrans used rocks to block off an open space near Bayshore Boulevard in 2017, KTVU reported. The public library’s Eureka Valley-Harvey Milk Branch also received backlash for its landscaping, which was designed to deter the homeless.

"There's actually a name for it. It's called anti-homeless architecture," Jennifer Friedenbach, executive director of the Coalition on Homelessness, told KTVU on Monday.

"We have 1,200 people on the wait list for shelter,” she said. “That's for tonight. People have nowhere to go.”

Because the boulders do not block the sidewalk entirely, the city has no plans to remove them, a San Francisco Public Works department spokeswoman told the news outlet.

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