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City deal could move Right 2 Dream Too camp

(Image is Clickable Link) by: TRIBUNE FILE PHOTO - The Right 2 Dream Too homeless camp in Old Town could be moved as part of a city deal that includes dropping a lawsuit and ending city fines against the group.Portland city officials are on the verge of a settlement to move the controversial Right 2 Dream Too homeless camp from its Old Town location at Northwest Fourth Avenue and Burnside Street.

The camp will be moved to city-owned property beneath the west end of the Broadway Bridge, according to several City Hall sources. The site is used as a parking lot, and area employees who have monthly parking agreements with the lot have been told to find new parking spaces this week.

Among the issues holding up an announcement of the deal is the length of the lease for the new campsite.

At the same time, the city has agreed to drop more than $25,000 in fines levied against Right 2 Dream Too, if the homeless group agrees to drop its lawsuit against the city.

Attorneys representing Right 2 Dream Too have argued in Multnomah County Circuit Court that city’s fines for being an illegal campsite are unwarranted. An agreement among the city, property owners and Right 2 Dream Too would drop the case shortly before a judge’s ruling, which could be issued soon.

When Right 2 Dream Too set up the camp in October 2011, Portland city code did not include rules governing an urban homeless campsite. Bureau of Development Services officials soon afterward adopted state recreational campground rules to govern the Old Town camp.

The removal of the campsite next to the Chinatown Gate could affect other properties in the area. Across the street from Right 2 Dream Too, the Portland Development Commission's abandoned Grove Hotel was to be part of a project by developer David Gold, who planned to turn the building into an international youth hostel. Gold pulled out of the deal early this year, saying he could not commit to the project as long as the homeless camp remained across the street.