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Moving Deadline For Homeless Encampments Near I-95 Interchange

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Some of the people living in this homeless encampment near Dale Boulevard say they've been here for years. But VDOT says traffic safety concerns mean the camps have to clear out.
Jonathan Wilson
Some of the people living in this homeless encampment near Dale Boulevard say they've been here for years. But VDOT says traffic safety concerns mean the camps have to clear out.

The order comes from Virginia's Department of Transportation.

VDOT spokesperson Joan Morris says it's the result of persistent complaints about homeless individuals crossing exit ramp traffic near Dale Boulevard to get to their tents in the woods.

"We don't seek these encampments out, however when they're brought to our attention, and there's an imminent danger involved, than we have to act," she says.

Morris says state police have been in the area every night this week, warning people about the Friday deadline.

John Newton, who's been homeless for more than a year, says many people don't know where they'll go.

That's compounded by the fact that the local winter shelter closes for the season Friday.

"I can't really envision what's going to happen, but it won't be anything pretty," Newton says.

Newton says his tent isn't on state property, so he can stay put for now.

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