Trash problems cause neighbourhood spat
Rampant illegal dumping has fuelled a long-simmering dispute over garbage between a high-end condo development and the neighbourhood next door.
A fence and hedge appears to be the dividing line between the Cloverdale Condos in Devonshire and Ap Owen Road in Smith’s, an area of housing and farmland from Collector’s Hill down to the South Shore.
But the development’s site where residents’ trash goes into dumpsters for pick-up crosses the boundary — with some Ap Owen residents telling The Royal Gazette that they would prefer if Cloverdale kept the trash to its own side.
Some residents contacted this week by the Gazette said that they had no issue with it.
But one said: “It’s a shame that our Cloverdale neighbours allow the area to look so untidy. We have complained for years but nothing changes.”
He added: “One of our residents has seen rats among the garbage. That would make it a health hazard.”
A Cloverdale resident countered that the roadside mess at the pick-up point had nothing to do with condo owners, but came from outsiders targeting it for dumping.
The eight-acre condo property adjoins Ap Owen — commonly rendered, but misspelt, as AP Owen.
Although it marks a parish boundary, both fall in the constituency of Devonshire East, represented by MP Christopher Famous, of the Progressive Labour Party.
Mr Famous said this week that he was familiar with the dispute over the rubbish collection, which had been raised by several of his constituents.
But he said he could not weigh in on the matter, calling it “a private property issue”.
According to several area residents, including people from Cloverdale, the site of the condo development’s trash collection is not part of the property, but is rented.
The late Larry Dennis, Auditor-General from 1978 to 2009 and an Ap Owen Road resident, leased the corner of land used for trash collection to the development for “a very nominal fee”, a Cloverdale resident said.
Describing the dumpster site as “a no-man’s land”, the resident said that Cloverdale had made every effort to advertise the site as private property and keep waste secure in dumpsters.
Trash heaped at the site and ditched on the roadside comes from “people outside the neighbourhood who have been illegally dumping there for years”.
“We see trucks come up there at night — we get fridges, couches and all sorts of trash dumped there. You can see them. They know they’re not supposed to be there.”
The Ap Owen Road site, which does not adjoin any houses on the road, is also distanced from the condominiums, and easily accessed by garbage trucks.
The Cloverdale resident described the arrangement as a happy medium — except for dumping.
Efforts to secure the site or add cameras have been discussed by Cloverdale’s board.
The resident said that the real problem came from “outside the neighbourhood”, adding: “Obviously we get as upset as the neighbours do when people dump there.”