Published: Wed, November 30, 2016
Business | By Max Garcia

Homeless Man's Stylish Digs Sparks Standoff Under L.A. Freeway

Homeless Man's Stylish Digs Sparks Standoff Under L.A. Freeway

Ceola Waddell Jr, 59, began living there about six months ago and, thanks to a video posted to Facebook earlier this month that has since gone viral, Waddell has become an Internet sensation.

He's given a cheery tour of his humble abode which he calls 'Paradise Lane'. "The first and second time, they came and got all my coats, my food, my cooking utensils, my makeshift Jacuzzi, which I made out of a refrigerator, laid it on its back and put water in it so I could take a bath".

Introducing his bedroom, he continued: 'Come on down, you have now entered the man cave. "This is where my quarters are". Nearby residents frequent his roadside hotdog stand, where he sells "Dice Dogs" for the bargain price of $2.50, and he's even attracted a tenant for his guest room.

Waddell also has a guest room that he claims to rent for $25 a week or $10 a night.

Waddell's homebuilding efforts - he calls his compound Paradise Lane - apparently flew under the radar, relevant to the city's ongoing efforts to clean up and correct the current crisis of homelessness.

Homeless man Ceola Waddell Jr's personal 'paradise' in freeway underpass goes viral
Homeless man turns freeway underpass into his personal 'paradise'

Since the video went viral, tourist started visiting Waddell at Paradise Lane.

"I refuse to let the city beat me down to what they think a homeless person's profile is, living on cardboard", Mr. Waddell Jnr said. "This should be a landmark".

"There's been a great deal of public safety and public health concern from neighbors in the area, as well as LAPD and the Sanitation Department", a spokeswoman for city councilor Curren D Price said. They say the site is risky and that Waddell has turned down their offers for temporary housing and homeless services. However, Waddell insists that he wants housing because of a recent incident where two men tried to rob him at gunpoint as he slept in his bed.

Although he told a newspaper that he realizes the danger that living there portends, he's clearly making the best of a very bad situation.

"I've set this up three times", Waddell told Fox 11. "I'm being innovative", he said and he showed the camera around. "If I was in the Arctic I'd make me an igloo".

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