Every Friday, volunteers with Food Not Bombs
lug food over to Stranahan Park, where dozens of homeless people while away the day to the chagrin of police, local businesses, and (we're told but haven't confirmed) Broward County Library officials. Until recently, the cops had a mobile "Skywatch" unit parked there to deter... crime? Loitering? In last week's feature story, we followed the group through a dinnertime "sharing" in the park.
Now the park is getting a new neighbor -- thanks to the demolition of the low-slung building that stood on the southwest corner of Broward and Andrews, at the exact geographical center of the city.
Today bulldozers are moving dirt, and
a fence stands around the section of property, which appears to be about a third the size of Stranahan. A map of the lot:
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's Brittany Wallman blogged about the park
this morning; she called over to the county administrator's office for more information. She decided to preemptively name the spot "Panhandler Park" because of its proximity to Stranahan and the speculation that homeless people will want to hang out across the street too. (The story also links to a pretty incongruous Broward County Transit ad from last year, proclaiming that "Stranahan Park is only a bus ride away!").
This is just down the street from New Times' world headquarters (and City Hall), so you'll likely be hearing more about the project in the coming days. Or maybe it will be a private park, for county employees on lunch breaks from the adjacent building? Either way, it sits dead smack in the flow of traffic of down-and-out pedestrians making their way between the bus terminal, the park, and other downtown services. We'll see what develops.
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