Several boulders that were placed on a San Francisco sidewalk along Clinton Park earlier this month are now in the street.
Tensions are mounting over the large rocks as some people see them as a sign of hate toward homeless people. But the neighbors responsible for having the boulders moved in say they’ve had it with crime along their street.
The boulders along Clinton Park were moved in about three weeks ago, but initially it was a mystery how they got there. And someone keeps moving them out into the street.
The city, which three times previously sent crews to move them back onto the sidewalk, said it's not going to move the rocks back again. Instead, crews placed orange traffic cones around the large rocks.
The neighbors group believes the boulders can help keep crime at bay. So, they pooled their money together to put about 20 large rocks along the sidewalk, where they said people have been selling drugs and leaving human waste outside their homes. The city was’t doing anything about it, residents said.
"It makes me kinda sad," resident Alissa Moe said. "I haven’t noticed people hanging out on the street the last couple of days."
To city officials, the whole thing is still a mystery, especially how the boulders were moved in.
"We really don’t know how the boulders got here," said Rachel Gordon of the city's Public Works Department. "It’s possible they could be deemed illegal dumping; they could be there without a permit. There are definitely scenarios we’re looking at."
Not all the residents along the street are happy with the result.
"Oh, they’re to make everything look nicer. No. It’s to try and keep vagrants away," neighbor Alan Walton said. "If they’re gonna do it, be truthful about it."
People living on the street did say it has been a little quieter at night since the big stones moved in. But the city said it will continue to look into the legality of the boulders.