Safety concerns force Cupertino homeless camp disbanding

Photo courtesy of City of Cupertino Facebook page.Photo courtesy of City of Cupertino Facebook page.

The homeless encampment along N. Wolfe Road in Cupertino is set to be disbanded, as safety concerns rise following a recent hit-and-run death nearby.

Both the Wolfe Road encampment and another near the I-280 off-ramp are precariously close to traffic lanes. The two sites are situated on land controlled partially by the city and part by Caltrans.

Earlier this summer, the city placed sanitation stations near the sites following requests from neighbors concerned for the welfare of the homeless there. However, the city has since determined their proximity to traffic routes puts both camp residents and local motorists at risk.

“I just hope that people know that what I’m trying to do is difficult and that we’re trying to do it with as much compassion for everybody as possible,” Cupertino City Manager Deborah Feng told the Mercury News about the city’s actions.

While most homeless encampment disbanding efforts have been postponed because of COVID-19, officials say safety risks of staying outweigh inaction.

County officials told the Mercury News they are working with Cupertino to find temporary shelter or housing for the displaced. Disbanding is set for Monday, September 21.