Miami proposes relocating city’s homeless to island near sewage plant

Miami may relocate some of the city’s homeless population out of the streets and into city-sponsored encampments on an island housing a wastewater treatment plant.

Earlier this year, Miami-Dade’s Board of County Commissioners asked city officials to come up with ideas to mitigate its homeless population in the city, according to the Daily Mail.

City Manager Art Noriega called for an encampment to be established on the northern region of the Virginia Key island, one of five locations being discussed, beside a sewage treatment plant and a biking trail. The other four possible locations as options include three parking lots, two of which are located near residential buildings.

The city is considering the proposal that would relocate homeless people, which was recently recorded at 1,525 people, who live on the street in heavily populated tourist areas, like downtown, Overtown, and Little Havana.

The proposal details a plan to establish as many as nine large tents, which can hold up to 22 people, and a parking lot in the northernmost region of the Virginia Key.

At an estimated cost of $719,573, the plan offers a 50-room set-up within three of the tents, that would include air conditioning units for each tent, as well as bathrooms and showers.

The plan also includes the option to build tiny homes on the island, however, city officials have warned that the houses could reduce the chances of them leaving if the homeless people perceive it to be permanent housing. Other options include setting up collapsible trailers or small sheds that can fit up to two beds.

A local cycling group has expressed opposition to the homeless encampment, as the island spot is near biking trails. The cycling group Miami Bike Scene shared city official contact information on its website for how to “Oppose ‘Transformation & Transition Zone’ on Virginia Key.”

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