Oakland Adds Planter Boxes Under I-580 To Stop Homeless Sleeping Beneath Bridge
In a move that has divided the opinions of local residents, planter boxes have been placed under the 580 freeway, specifically located at Corner on Grand Ave and Tupac Shakur Way.
This area was a regular spot for homeless people to sleep as it is covered from the rain and also allows easy access to the freeway above.
On the one hand, it does seem effective for now as nobody will be able to sleep against the wall. However, these deterrents are often intended to address the visible presence of homelessness in public spaces, but their effectiveness and ethical considerations are subjects of debate.
Homeless deterrents, like planter boxes, tend to be short-term solutions that address the visible aspects of homelessness without addressing the root causes. They may temporarily displace homeless individuals from one area but do not offer a path out of homelessness.
Instead, it seems like the city of Oakland will simply send the homeless people to another place to do the same thing, but obviously has to spend money on both implementing and maintaining the planter boxes.
Furthermore, many residents wondered how these plants were meant to grow under a freeway with very limited sunlight and less access to water as they are covered by concrete.