Occupy Protesters Booted From "Gezi Gardens" in Hayes Valley Plan to Return Today
Yesterday, San Francisco police raided the Hayes Valley site now known as the Gezi Gardens, arresting seven tree-sitting who have been occupying the site of the former Hayes Valley Farm. Today, those same protesters are planning to march right back to the site, which they turned into an eco-village of sorts, and take it over.
According to a press release sent out last night, activists have attempted to contact Supervisor London Breed, with no response. So instead of waiting around for politics to work, the group is reconvening today at 6 p.m. to take over the land.
The group had set up shop on June 1, blocking tree cutters from doing their job; the city's plan is to turn the gardens into a new 182-unit housing complex, which would help with the city's housing needs, but hinder the need for open space.
Yesterday at about 1 a.m., the cops raided the site where some 40-plus protesters had been occupying. According to Sgt. Dennis Toomer, the cops had been in "constant contact" with the protesters, warning them that they had overstayed their welcome. On Thursday, police stormed the site, using cherry picker vehicles to remove people who had been living on platforms they built in the trees.
According to the protesters, developers began bulldozing the gardens and cutting down mature trees within hours of the police raid. However, the cutting was halted midday, apparently "due to new reports and photographs evidencing that the land is home to the Allen Humming Bird, a unique animal protected under The Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918."
That bought the protesters a little more time. This could get exciting.