Roll 'em out; Pima County partners with neighborhood to tackle shopping cart problem
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
CREATED Mar. 23, 2013
Reporter: Maggie Vespa
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - They are, in essence, litter on steroids, and they leave Tucson pretty trashed.
We're talking about that bizarre, ever-present eyesore: shopping carts.
Saturday, one Westside neighborhood came together with one mission in mind. That was to round up the carts and roll 'em out.
It's one big basket on four little wheels.
As for how it got to Midvale Park, we'll probably never know.
And residents there don't care.
They just want it gone.
"We're going to have operation clean sweep today," said neighborhood association president Joe Miller.
Saturday morning roughly 50 volunteers from groups like the LDS church, and local labor unions turned out to Grijalva Elementary.
After a quick pep talk from Pima County supervisor Rchard Elias, they were off.
9OYS reporter Maggie Vespa asked, "Why not let Midvale Park take care of this? Why is the county getting involved?"
Elias responded, "One of the things I feel is that the county and the city have kind of been sniveling about this and talking about whose responsibility it is. I'm a believer in action."
Cart hunters hit hot spots near 1-19 and Irvington, pulling them from weeds and even chipping them from concrete.
"To see it in just basic nature, it kind of takes away from it, and especially because shopping carts tend to attract a bunch of other debris," said volunteer Elder Bleyl.
But a couple hours in, they met their match in a clearing near Drexel and Calle Santa Cruz.
9OYS counted more than 40 carts, some in pieces.
Volunteers told us it was simply too big of a job for them to handle.
They decided to leave it to the city or the county.
Total, they cleaned up 70 carts Saturday and carted them back to their proper homes.
Motivation, say Midvale Park leaders, to tackle other 'broken window problems'.
"Like potholes, graffiti," said Miller. "Then it's a numbers game, and you just see things turn around. People are not comfortable doing bad things in good areas."
County supervisor Elias is encouraging other neighborhoods to join in the cart clean up campaign.
For information, contact his office at 740-8126. You can also head to the office's website by clicking here.