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Peachtree-Pine Vacant Lot Gated Shut

The bank that owns the parking lot where hundreds of homeless men hang out during the day has installed a fence and locked it

The men from the Peachtree-Pine homeless shelter have moved on.

Well, not really.

Efforts to remove the Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless, which operates the controversial shelter, and relocate the men, remains tied up in courts.

But as Inspector Selena Swoope of the Atlanta Police Department’s Community Services Division - Community Oriented Policing Section - confirmed to Neighborhood Planning Unit E board members Tuesday night, the men are no longer spending much of the day loitering across the street in the vacant parking lot located at 464 Courtland Street.

That’s because the property owner, SunTrust Bank, has recently installed a metal fence around the lot and locked it shut. The lot is still cluttered with trash and debris, but that too will change soon according to another code enforcement officer accompanying Swoope at Tuesday’s meeting.

SunTrust, which gained control of the property by default, has also hired an officer to “work’’ the property according to an APD officer at the meeting. However, with that lot now gated up, the men have simply moved across the street to another vacated lot at the northeast corner of Pine and Courtland streets.

Several members of the NPU-E board expressed frustration over the much prolonged Peachtree-Pine shelter issue Tuesday night, but that is not uncommon at such meetings.

And as he has before, Geoff Rogers, vice president of the Midtown Neighbors' Association, offered up his version of a solution.

“The city of Atlanta has the option to shut the water off,’’ Rogers said. “Without water, the Department of Health would have to shut it down immediately, and the city of Atlanta has been told by the courts they have every right to do it.”

Hunt Archbold (Editor) June 07, 2012 at 01:58 PM
In communicating with the MNA's Geoff Rogers today, his quote in the above story is based on a statement by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Craig Schwall at a February court hearing. Said Judge Schwall: "We wouldn't even be here if the city of Atlanta and Georgia Power had the courage to stick up for their taxpayers and shareholders and cut your utilities off." See here: http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2012/02/10/more-details-from-peachtree-pine-court-ruling
Hunt Archbold (Editor) June 07, 2012 at 02:01 PM
One of our Midtown Patch Facebook followers, Nicholas L. Meli, wrote: "Not trying to play the bleeding heart here, but just because you close down the shelter or lock up the lot, doesn't mean these folks are just going to disappear. They're still going to be roaming the streets and will find a new "home." Atlanta has a problem with vagrants and drifters unfortunately, and I'm not sure how you can solve that overnight. Though it would be nice if you could walk down Peachtree in Midtown and Downtown without being constantly hassled by panhandlers."
Tim Williams June 08, 2012 at 06:29 PM
This is SO nasty to ride by and look at. It a rotten shame that tourists and or visitors have to be exposed to such a nasty eye sore. I think the city of ATL should allow every single man a one way voucher on Grayhound and a small amount of cash and just see what happens. I am SO ready to regain this part of midtown back and stop being scared to walk to that part of town. Countless amounts of homeless have told me Pine street Shelter is nasty. I have been told by one man in Grant park that he caught tb and contracted lice from that shelter. Board it up and get rid of those people.
Micheal Heckathorn June 08, 2012 at 10:23 PM
It seems the city doesn't care much for the business's or folks that live in this area, why is this do we not pay our taxes? when you call to complain you are told these men have rights, Well what of MY rights? if I whipped it out and started peeing on the street you would arrest me, but not these men because they have rights!! GO FIGURE
Jay June 12, 2012 at 11:00 AM
The people just relocated across the street to another vacant lot. I have a room at the motel where I can see them casually using drugs all day & night.
bastard out of california June 13, 2012 at 07:33 PM
I feel for the guys who live in that lot. It's too bad you can't get drug treatment until you are drug free in atlanta. The people staying in the lot do not live at peachtree pine. they live in the parking lot. the parking lot is not a part of the shelter. residents found in the parking lot are banned from the shelter.
Clicker June 14, 2012 at 01:29 PM
"I feel for the guys who live in that lot. It's too bad you can't get drug treatment until you are drug free in atlanta." Seriously? Do you really believe that help for any one of those crackheads is not available if they asked for it and actually wanted to become sober?
bman July 15, 2012 at 05:58 PM
yes. that is a fact. even if you are "sentenced to drug treatment" by a court, it fills up fast.

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