Westchester Encampment Poses Danger for Airport Travel

(Editor’s note: Circling the News was asked to investigate the RVs parking unlawfully in the Westchester parking lot by the swimming pool. Before speaking to people in the RV’s, this editor visited the encampment across from the underpass across from the landing strip at LAX.)

There is an encampment under Westchester parkway across from LAX.

As residents drive to the Los Angeles International Airport down Lincoln, they may have observed tents underneath the Culver Boulevard bridge at Lincoln, just before Ballona Creek. Now, they appear to be gone.

While waiting for the light to turn, this editor, saw a head pop out in the dirt behind the bridge supports. It appears that some enterprising individual(s) have dug out a dwelling. That would explain the absence of tents. Is it safe for people to live in a hole in the dirt underneath the bridge? That is a question that would have to be posed to LAHSA or an engineer.

Continuing down Lincoln, this edited parked in the Westchester Municipal Lot. There was a van covered with solar panels parked in a space next to the library.

On site was the CIRCLE team, a 24/7 unarmed response program that deploys a team of mental health professionals and individuals (with lived experience to address non-violent LAPD calls).

“We come every day,” a CIRCLE employee told this editor. The lot by the library closes at 8 p.m., so everyone is required to leave. The CIRCLE member was asked where the vans go, and he guessed to local streets.

They were asked if they had approached the van, whose roof was covered with solar panels.

“Yes, we offer help, if they don’t take it there’s nothing we can do,” the CIRCLE employee said.

This van parks by the library in Westchester daily.

Walking through the lot, this editor passed by the senior center, where four vagrants had camped the night before. Police had stopped and asked them to move, so the senior had access to the facility.

There was black smoke residue on one of the walls of the center. CTN was told a homeless man had burned to death there. He had been set on fire, no one was ever arrested for his death, but it was thought his girlfriend was responsible.

A homeless man was burned to death on the porch of the Westchester Senior Center. The assailant was never caught.

This editor then walked along Lincoln to under the Westchester Parkway, with a friend.

There were between 12 and 14 people camping, including one woman, who with the young males at this location. The men were taking turns riding a mini-motorcycle up and down Lincoln, dodging traffic.

One camper had built a 6-ft. tall wood structure to store items. There was a propane tank.

The noise was deafening at this location. Not only is the traffic heavy as people use Lincoln to go to LAX, but jet noise from planes landing on the runway parallel to Lincoln made conversation nearly impossible.

“We have to use megaphones to talk,” one young man said. He was asked if he had been offered help from LAHSA or any organization. He said he was told “just be patient.”

Some Westchester residents worry that a fire under this road, would shut down Lincoln, a major road to LAX.

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2 Responses to Westchester Encampment Poses Danger for Airport Travel

  1. Juliana Hanner says:

    It’s mind boggling that you can go to other cities – Ventura County for instance and see none of this anywhere. All public parks, libraries, senior centers, rec centers, hiking trails, etc. operate without the homeless all over. Why is that? Because they don’t tolerate it. Their priority is to keep residents safe.

  2. Sue says:

    LA makes it too easy for the “homeless” to just do what THEY want to do. NOTHING If they really wanted to change, they could. So many of them are offered help, but so few take it. Why because they want to live like they do because no one says they can’t. No one enforces the law. Not even the Mayor! There is always an excuse for everything. People who want help, get it.

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