‘Tent City’ residents move ahead of deadline – but only a block away

CHICAGO -- Dozens of homeless people are preparing to be displaced as the city of Chicago moves forward with a plan to clear the people – and their belongings  - out from under Lake Shore Drive overpasses.

The city of Chicago as forcing them to leave the area, as it begins a repair project on the crumbling overpass.   The city says the people could go move from Uptown’s Wilson Ave viaduct to the Pacific Gardens Mission shelter on the near West Side, but they have to move every 12 hours and can’t store their belongings.

In court last week, a judge sided with the city and notices were posted saying the area will be cleared at 7 a.m. Monday.  The signs warn that “items remaining are subject to disposal.”

“The judge ruled that the homeless people cannot stay under the viaduct,” said Ronald Schupp, the organizer of Uptown’s “Tent City.”  “We’re going to move over here to land that’s public space, where we believe they have a right to stay.”

So the group picked up and moved one block west.  They have pitched new tents in the parkway along Wilson Avenue. It’s not clear how long the city will allow the tents here, but neighbors are hoping for a resolution.

Advocates say they believe there are more than 82,000 families in Chicago     struggling with homelessness.