ATLANTA — Following concern expressed by residents after witnessing individuals experiencing homelessness search shelter in crawl areas inside metro Atlanta bridges, Georgia Division of Transportation crews are starting to implement options.
Simply 24 hours after an 11Alive report, Georgia Division of Transportation crews had been seen welding the crawl area beneath the I-85 Downtown Connector on Friday.
11Alive’s Bobeth Yates captured a video the place crews could be seen performing work beneath the bridge as she handed beneath the overpass.
Folks gathering or objects being improperly saved beneath roadways has many nervous the state of affairs might result in a bridge collapse much like the one in 2017. That is when a bit of I-85 fell after a large fireplace.
Credit score: WXIA
11Alive’s very personal Crash Clark shared what he witnessed whereas passing beneath the overpass just a few days in the past.
“I noticed a man placing an enormous inexperienced trash barrel down, and he climbs up on high of it, and he begins making his method contained in the interstate overpass, virtually much like an attic in a home,” he mentioned.
He’s among the many newest to witness somebody getting into a bridge hatch. And he isn’t alone; whereas investigating the story, our cameras captured a unique particular person getting into the crawl area of a bridge.
“Clearly, they’re getting into there as a result of they’re chilly or they want shelter, however possibly we will discover warming facilities or create extra shelters. However I feel that’s a hazard for the neighborhood,” mentioned one resident.
Cathryn Vassell with Companions for HOME, a nonprofit that helps to attach individuals experiencing homelessness with assets, mentioned the priority is on their radar.
“We now have elevated that subject to the Georgia Division of Transportation they usually understand it. They’re working to safe these places and we’ve requested that they prioritize that,” Vassell mentioned.
In a press release, GDOT beforehand confirmed the hassle and added they’re working with native regulation enforcement and social service businesses to safe space bridges. Atlanta Police mentioned they beforehand did an operation a few days in the past, eradicating some individuals experiencing homelessness from the bridges.
11Alive has reached out to the Georgia Division of Transportation to collect extra particulars on the latest answer. We’re awaiting a response.