City closes encampment on Loomis Street and is revitalizing businesses in 14621 zip code

[anvplayer video=”5150256″ station=”998131″]

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Mayor Malik Evans said the city is focusing on revitalizing the 14621 zip code, closing the homeless encampment on Loomis Street and investing to improve the factory at suit company Hickey Freeman.

This fall, Mayor Evans has delivered conferences every two weeks about the city’s efforts to curb gun violence and improve the quality of life in underserved communities in the city. The conference on Tuesday focused on the 14621 zip code, which includes North Clinton Ave and Joseph Ave in between Norton Street and Clifford Ave. That zip code is one of the poorest in the state.

Evans said the city is working to close unsanctioned homeless encampments throughout the city, including working with state authorities if the encampment is on state property. City officials including the Rochester Police Department are working to help homeless people to find permanent housing, as well as connecting them with services if they’re struggling with drug addiction or mental health issues.

Evans’ conference focused on the removal of tents on Loomis Street, where city leaders recently put up a fence. City leaders said the encampment was a hub for drug use and sales.

Read our coverage of Loomis Street:

Dana Miller, Commissioner of the Department of Neighborhood and Business Development, said the city has invested in improving the facilities at Hickey Freeman. In addition, the state provided funding to convert the historic Hickey Freeman building into affordable housing. The Tailor Square project at Hickey Freeman received millions from the state to build 134 apartments including for seniors.

Evans got approval to extend his Gun Violence State of Emergency for November. The state of emergency gives Evans “powers to protect life and property and to bring the emergency under control.” The state of emergency has been in effect since July 21.

During the last conference, on Nov. 3, Evans announced an initiative called “Operation Talk it Out” to resolve disputes through words instead weapons.