Local News

City Clears RVs from Valencia Ave.

The city of Fullerton began enforcement of enhanced parking regulations along Valencia Ave. beginning April 30, where many folks living in their RVs had been parking. During the enforcement, all RVs and cars parked illegally were made to move, and around 10 vehicles were towed. Prior to this, the City had posted notifications about the new regulations.

Valencia Avenue between Raymond and State College Blvd where a number of RVs were made to leave. Photo by Fr. Dennis Kriz.

This particular stretch of Valencia is in an industrial area of the City and has seen an increase in not just RVs, but commercial trucks and cars from nearby auto repair shops parked illegally. Nearby business owners had complained about the impact of the lack of parking enforcement.

In the weeks leading up to enforcement, members of the faith-based and non-profit community worked with the City to assist those living in their RVs.

“The Faith based community, City Net, County Mental Health Staff, Pathways of Hope, Wound Walk, and City Staff were on site offering services over 20 times to all people located on Valencia,” Fullerton’s Deputy Director of Community and Economic Development Kellee Fritzal said. “Several RVs were provided mechanical assistance, registration, smog checks for free along with shelter beds…Staff continues to offer services.”

The City also plans to begin enforcement of parking regulations along nearby Walnut where other RVs are parked.

Among those who have worked to assist those living in RVs is Enedina Clements of the Tri-Parish Collaborative.

“We went RV by RV to determine the specific needs and hopes of the RV dwellers,” Clements said. “We encountered many older individuals…many of them had limited financial resources, modest social security or SSI benefits. Not enough to rent an apartment. Sadly, we encountered many folks with serious health issues.”

Due to this outreach, some found shelter in Fullerton’s Navigation Center, some left to stay with family, and others simply moved their RVs to other towns.

“The people did not disappear,” Father Dennis Kriz of the Tri-Parish Collaborative said. “Most of them simply scattered and the relationships that we’ve made with them continue.”

Last year, Fullerton had a “Safe Parking” program, but it ended in January. Currently, there is no designated place for those living in RVs to park in Orange County, and many cities (like Fullerton) have passed ordinances making it more difficult for them to have a place to park.

The next step is “insisting that County and our (Orange County) Supervisor Doug Chaffee find a location for those living in their vehicles to park safely,” Clements said.

3 replies »

  1. Thanks for covering this important story. With all due acknowledgment of the balancing of interests that is integral to this issue, and gratitude for any help that was provided to those living in RVs, you cannot NIMBY people out of existence. Would like to see what becomes of those who went to the Navigation Center, and others who, as Fr. Kriz said, “scattered.” What is a regional solution to a regional problem? What is a national approach to a national tragedy?

  2. I’m here because of your blog, JLT. I’ve been a fan for many years. Your latest poem really struck home and meant a lot to me.
    I think I’m about 10 years older than you. We’ve lived in the same corners of downtown Fullerton, seen the same sights, frequented the same bars. I’m confident we’ve both witnessed much of the same beauty and horror of this town. We both share a fondness about PKD as well.

    My father passed away in Fullerton in December and I couldn’t get back to see the funeral because of the pandemic. Your poem said everything I felt somehow.

    I’m a Fullerton expat. I moved out 15 years ago to start a new life in TN. I check in on your blog from time to time for the best reminder and raw update of the city I grew up in and love and hate. You’re a hell of a talent. I hope you know that. Don’t ever give up.

    I look forward to your next post.

  3. I want to thank the Fullerton Observer for its coverage of this issue. Generations in the future will be able to recall how the city responded to this problem at this time. Once again, thank you!

  4. The politicians are not very good at solving problems; their lack of insights and their problem solving skills make them unfit to run this city. Their lack of heart for parking problems is intolerable. I’ve watched the incompetence for over a decade. Its really appalling. They have a lot of nerve to run for office- and then lack the skills to really solve the problems.