Metro says Second Avenue park should be fenced off

Llewellyn Scheepers and Bob Gillies sit on what is left of a bench they once fixed when they kept the park clean. “It is now filthy and should be on level five, not two as recently stated by the metro,” says Gillies.

A Geduld businessman is saddened by the state of the park in Second Avenue, next to the Springs Theatre.

“I recently went past the site corner we used to clean and it looks like a refuse dump,” says Bob Gillies.

In a recent report the metro mentioned it has team leaders and supervisors monitoring litter-picking teams deployed to keep the CBD clean.

The metro recently employed environmental auditors to audit the CBD, and Springs was given good grades for cleanliness.

“They graded the CBD on a level two, which means the town is predominantly free of litter, except small items, but this site belongs on level five, as it has been piling up with litter for months,” says Gillies.

Level five includes dense littering, where more than 30 per cent of the visible surface contains litter.

Gillies says he recently visited Zimbabwe and never saw this sort of mess.

“It must be the filthiest spot in town and when winter comes, they will start making fires again in the flower beds,” he says.

Gillies and his team took unemployed people from the street and paid them for the upkeep of this corner opposite the old Manhattan Hotel.

He says they planted flowers in the flower beds, fixed the benches and kept the area clean so that people could enjoy a break during their lunch hour.

These workers were threatened by vagrants and were scared to work there, therefore Gillies had to stop the project.

When he recently drove past the site, there were piles of new beer bottles thrown on the flower beds.

According to metro spokesperson Themba Gadebe, the area is regularly cleaned but the informal businesses and vagrants constantly dump there and make fires next to the wall.

“The area should be fenced off as it is part of the Springs Theatre,” says Gadebe.

Anna Robertson

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