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San Rafael temporarily closing Boyd Park to encourage homeless people to leave
By Megan Hansen
POSTED: 01/22/15, 12:01 AM PST |1 COMMENT
Fed up with homeless people congregating at Boyd Memorial Park, San Rafael Mayor Gary Phillips is taking matters into his own hands by closing the park Monday.
Closure signs are in the process of being created and will be posted at the beginning of the week. The 4.2-acre park on B Street is anticipated to be closed for 30 days, but Phillips said it could be longer.
"I want to break the cycle so this is not a place for them to hang out," Phillips said. "I want to return this place to the community and have some family-friendly events here."
City Council members have received an influx of emails and phone calls recently from residents and business owners complaining about homeless people drinking, doing drugs and littering in the park. The Marin History Museum, which occupies the Boyd Gate House adjacent to the park, has also been vandalized and had items stolen.
Phillips said residents have told him they're afraid to take their children to the area because the homeless people make them feel uncomfortable. While city employees encounter many homeless people who are trying to improve their lives, he said the people who hang out at the park are not interested in changing their ways.
"Reportedly this group is not of this nature. They sit here, have their methamphetamine and go get a meal at St. Vincent de Paul," Phillips said.
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