Members of Occupy Philadelphia say they will be arrested rather than move out of Dilworth Plaza to allow for a $50 million construction project.
Update, 6:15 p.m.
An eviction deadline has come and gone and members of Occupy Philadelphia remain encamped at Philadelphia City Hall. Some removed their tents and semi-permanent structures from Dilworth Plaza on Sunday, but police did not clear out the area. Gwen Snyder of Occupy says some are ready to be arrested instead of leaving.”We do have individuals who are committed to non-violently protesting the eviction, we have individuals for various reasons who do not want to face arrest. We are going to support everyone in their individual choices as long as they are non-violent.”Fernando Salguero disassembled the Warming Station that had been a fixture at Occupy, but says the protest is far from over.”There are those individuals who want to stay put, there are those who want to go across the street and have the First Amendment operate between 9 AM and 7 PM and there are those who want tospread the occupation into other locations.”
Gwen Snyder of the group says some of the protesters will remain even after the 5 p.m. deadline today that had been set by Mayor Michael Nutter for eviction.The group says even if they are evicted, their movement will continue. The group has even scheduling a meeting tomorrow at Rittenhouse Square in the late afternoon to talk about their next move.
On Friday permits were issued for the start of the renovation project, which officially signaled the end of the permit issued to Occupy that allowed them to protest. The group says a permit issued for daytime hours for a splinter group has nothing to do with them and they are still requesting the city gives them a place to move their tents for another round the clock occupation.
Mayor Michael Nutter said on Friday the tents would not be allowed because they create security and sanitary issues.