Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Squatters in New York

A decade or so ago, there were well-established communities of the homeless all over the New York City, set up by people who formed close bonds and knew that the shelter system was too dehumanizing and brutalizing for them. The pier on Twelfth Avenue just across from the Chinese consulate had several dozen wooden shacks. A median in Long Island City, Queens, where two seldom-used freight lines parted ways, was a friendly location for another encampment. Photographer Margaret Morton documented the homeless casitas of the city and the community in the tunnel under Riverside Park.

Most of these communities have been destroyed, either because these locations have been reclaimed for use (AMTRAK now runs trains to Albany along the previously derelict Riverside Park tracks) or because real estate interests pushed to clear these parcels.

Now, The Brooklyn Daily reports on a small shantytown in Coney Island that has lived against the odds for five years. I hope this community survives its new-found publicity.


Pet sitting Mckinney said...

feels really sad for homeless people...

Gone Traveling. said...

Hi Robert, how are you?
I remember traveling with you to a couple of slums in Mumbai many years ago. I was a photography intern at one of the organisations you'd connected with. I haven't read your book yet, but I will.
It's great to find your blog!
Take care.