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Property Owner Orders People To Leave Charlotte Encampment By Friday

People have been camping at 12th and Poplar streets for months. This is the site in March 2020.
David Boraks
People have been camping at 12th and Poplar streets for months. This is the site in March 2020.

People living in tents on a vacant lot just outside uptown Charlotte have been given until Friday at 5 p.m. to move.  Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say WB Moore Co., an electrical contractor, delivered notices Aug. 7 to about 100 people living next to its offices at 12th and North Poplar streets. 

It's the second time since March that the company has notified homeless residents to leave the site. The company delayed enforcing the previous request.

"It just so happened to be in the midst of when COVID started to ramp out of control, and we said this is not good," said Dave Clewly, the company's risk control director. 

Clewley said the company plans to begin demolition on the site beginning Aug. 17 for a project that will include a parking lot and storage for the business. 

WB Moore said in a statement Monday it has received several citations that could lead to fines over trash, waste and unsanitary conditions at the property. The company said it has hired a contractor with heavy equipment to remove waste and debris, but contractors "won’t enter the area until everyone has vacated the premises due to safety concerns." 

A police spokesman said Roof Above and other agencies that work with homeless residents will be at the property this week to offer help. 

The site is three blocks from another encampment that has drawn attention recently near Roof Above, formerly the Urban Ministry Center. 

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that homeless camps not be removed amid the COVID-19 pandemic if other individual housing options are not available. 

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