Community Supported Shelters

Earlier this month police broke up a high profile homeless camp in Eugene called Whoville. The people who lived there said they felt safe and part of a community. The city has established a pilot program for legal camping. They're called"rest stops". So far there are two. They're creating community for people who need a sense of connection.

de Buhr: "…how are things going?"

Karen Richards

The Eugene City Council voted today [Wednesday] to withdraw a proposed rest-stop location for homeless people near the Science Factory and Cuthbert Amphitheater. Last Friday, Eugene police shut down an illegal homeless camp near downtown called Whoville.  

City Councilor Chris Pryor made the move to withdraw the rest-stop because it's problematic for the Science Factory, Nearby Nature and a car-camping program. Councilor George Brown bemoaned the fact that Whoville was closed before another site was made available for its residents.

Rachael McDonald

Eugene Police surrounded an illegal homeless camp known as Whoville Friday morning and told the 30 or so residents to pack up and go. The City Council gave an April 15th deadline for the site to close.

Rachael McDonald

Advocates for the Eugene homeless encampment known as Whoville are pushing for an extension of a deadline to close down the camp.  They expect the City will begin the process of evicting residents Tuesday.

Desmond O'Boyle

The Eugene City Council voted to open another homeless rest stop at a work session Monday evening.  The move comes after residents of the illegal homeless camp known as Whoville objected to a previously-approved site near the Whiteaker.

Rachael McDonald

Homeless advocates say a grassy area between a busy highway and the main line railroad in north Eugene is not a good place for the residents of Whoville. The City Council last week voted to approve a 3rd pilot "rest stop" for the people who've been at a camp near downtown for months.

It's a narrow piece along Northwest Expressway, near its intersection with River Road. No sidewalks. As vehicles whiz by, Ken Lainy sits in his wheelchair on a gravel driveway.

Tiffany Eckert

In a work session today (Wednesday) the Eugene City Council voted to shut down the homeless camp known as Whoville. The motion includes opening an alternate location in West Eugene.

Eugene City Manager John Ruiz moved that Whoville, currently located at Broadway and Hilyard, be closed by no later than April 1st. Ruiz also recommended authorizing a second "rest stop" at the Northwest Expressway location.

City of Eugene.

The Eugene City Council plans to extend its sunset date for a program that allows homeless people to camp in designated 'rest-stops'. This means Whoville residents have more time at their camp near downtown.

Whoville Coalition To Hold Open House

Feb 21, 2014
Rachael McDonald

The Whoville coalition will hold an open house Saturday. Its intention is to bring awareness to the urgency of finding a new site for residents. Nathan Showers, known as "Red", is one of Whoville's counselors and managers. He says he hopes the open house will give an inside look into how the establishment operates.

Red: "It's just to let everybody come together and see Whoville people and how we interact together in a group and our living situation. So, you can see how well we do get along and coincide together."

Rachael McDonald

Whoville residents have a month before the City of Eugene will shut it down. Meanwhile the City Manager is tasked with finding somewhere else for the 30 to 40 homeless people to go. The City Council voted 6 to 2 Wednesday to set the deadline.

Counselor Claire Syrett made the proposal. The City Manager recently announced the Whoville camp at West Broadway and Hilyard would have to close. Police put up no trespassing signs, then a fence with openings around the lot. Syrett says the council heard from community members asking for the camp to stay.

Desmond O'Boyle

Eugene City Councilors Monday proposed extending the sunset date on the rest-stop ordinance until October 31, 2014. This will require a public hearing.

Councilor Claire Syrett says she'd like the city to add a third rest-stop for homeless people at 8th and Mill or another location near downtown. Residents of Whoville, a homeless camp at West Broadway and Hilyard in Eugene have been told they'll have to leave that site. Last Friday, police erected a fence with openings around the lot. Michael Adams was among those who testified to council.

Whoville Residents Have Mixed Feelings About Fence

Jan 25, 2014
Desmond O'Boyle

Residents of the Eugene homeless camp referred to as Whoville have mixed feelings about a new chain link fence. The Eugene Police Department set up the barrier Friday and left two openings for people to pass through. Some, like Whoville resident Marty, say they feel safer with the fence up.

KLCC Staff

Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy will not use her executive powers to declare the Whoville homeless camp legal.  

Advocates had been asking the mayor to declare an emergency in order to legalize the encampment at West Broadway and Hilyard in Eugene. Instead, Piercy said in a statement issued late Friday, she will ask the Eugene City Council on Monday to extend the pilot “rest stop” program, clearing the path for a second site.  

Rachael McDonald

Homeless advocates are calling on Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy to use her executive power to declare a housing emergency so a homeless camp can remain. The group held a press conference Thursday at Whoville.

Rachael McDonald

The City of Eugene Friday posted "no trespassing" signs at a homeless camp near downtown that calls itself Whoville. The community of around 30 people has been living in tents at Hilyard and Broadway since September.

Eugene Police Sergeant Larry Crompton came to the camp to talk with residents and explain what's going on:

Crompton: "The signs that are up right now say 'prohibited camping' and those will be changed to 'no trespassing'. And there will come a time in the near future when there will be notice that  the people here will have to leave."