Hundreds of campers, RV’s, buses & vans fill the streets of Venice at historic levels.
By Nick Antonicello
The illegal vehicle population that has taken Venice by storm seems worse now then ever before!
While some progress has occurred regarding street encampments, these campers and RV’s have invaded Venice at a level so unacceptable that one can’t seem to go anywhere in the community where clusters of these vehicles are not illegally camped and permanently parked!
According to sources, one resident casually counted eleven (11) campers and recreational vehicles plus nineteen (19) additional vans that are occupied day and night.
More importantly, while many believe the myth that these individuals are residents of California, upon further inspection many of these vehicles are out-of-state drivers, coming from Texas, South Carolina, Oregon and Washington state.
And after speaking to some of those who were operating such out-of-state vehicles, it was clear that from their words Los Angeles was nationally known as a location that was RV friendly to such street occupation and Venice as the place to park without consequence.
A random sampling of these permanently parked vehicles were found specifically by the US Post Office just off the Windward Circle.
While many residents are generally supportive of the initial efforts of Councilwoman Traci Park, the problem has spiraled so out-of-control, the patience of others has become frayed, demanding immediate, emergency measures.
For the current, snail’s pace reaction by LA city officials is further frustrating locals who believe selective enforcement really equates to no enforcement at all, especially when vehicles with expired license plates, tags or no plates at all are parked and seemingly ignored from traffic enforcement citations.
For many believe Venice is the containment zone for the homeless crisis on the Westside and specifically CD-11, and that the continued targeting of Venice to shoulder alone additional housing and services for the homeless while other portions of the district like Westchester or Pacific Palisades continue an organized and defiant, “NIMBY” (not in my backyard) resistance to the carrying a shared responsibility to this crisis that has run amok!
Having covered this particular portion of the overall homeless street crisis, it seems as long as Venice is viewed as tolerant of such practices, the neighborhood will be a primary nesting ground for the illegally and permanently parked without consequence.
The pictures here display the volume and depth of the problem, but more importantly the lack of a credible response.
Residents want to support their elected officials, but action is the ultimate cure and the phony rhetoric that the problem is somehow improving is not reflective on the streets of Venice, especially when you see the volume of vehicles parked as of this writing.
For that empty rhetoric does not match the hard reality and it’s irritating and insulting to all who just want action, not words.
For something needs to change.
A change in policy needs to be implemented so that Venetians can feel the problem can be in fact, finally fixed.
The current conditions leave both the unhoused and locals angry, exhausted and seeking a solution that will change things for the better.
For that is not much to ask.
Nick Antonicello is a thirty-year resident who covers the issue of homelessness, street encampments and illegally parked vehicles in Venice. Have a street encampment or RV issue on your street or block, e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org