Old industrial site in Cleveland could be sold soon, but neighbors say help is needed now

Posted at 10:42 AM, Aug 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-07 10:42:00-04

News 5 previously exposed acity-owned property that has dangerous damage, overgrown weeds and wild animals on Cleveland’s west side. Now, an ordinance was just introduced to allow the city to sell the old Midland Steel site on Madison Avenue to a company called Weston, Inc. that would create an industrial facility.

However, On Your Side Investigators are showing there's still much more to do to keep neighbors safe.

Three weeks ago we told you Patrick Murphy's story about being injured from a downed fence surrounding the city-owned lot at West 106th and Madison. After our phone calls, zip ties now hold the fence together. The city did respond and come out for a fix. However, directly across from the field of weeds is a fence on West 110th that remains untouched. It’s been broken for a while even though city crews were already out in that area to fix the other fence.

The broken fence on West 110th is surrounded by deeply broken sidewalks and huge chunks of cement. That's not even mentioning the massive weeds that are still there three weeks after our initial report.

We were told the city doesn't have the right tools to chop the weeds. It contracts out the work and it's searching for a new company to cut them.

Then to add insult to injury, neighbors around the lot are enduring bumpy rides.

"It feels like you're on one of the old, wooden roller coasters," said Gary Wilke who’s lived in the neighborhood for 30 years.

West 106th that borders the old Midland Steel now-vacant lot is in terrible shape.

"The road is so horrible, I've got flat tires,” said Wilke. “My other car actually hit a pothole down here and it ripped the muffler off."

Wilke's neighbors also feel the pain.

"My family calls it Washboard Avenue,” said Mary Dean.

So, even though there could be good news about selling the property in the future, the neighbors told us they need action now. "Being ignored is not tolerable,” said Dean.

Mayor Frank Jackson's office declined our request for an on-camera interview.

Councilwoman Dona Brady, whose ward the site falls in, told us the ordinance could be passed as early as this month or next.