Challenging a Store in Ward 14 to Clean Up the Area

Submitted by ANGELnWard14 on Mon, 07/20/2009 - 00:14.

I pulled into a local store parking lot with weeds that were like 3 feet tall right next to the sidewalk, looking like tumbleweed and large enough to hide a person... kind of dangerous is what I thought... So, I made it my mission to ask the store manager to come outside for a brief discussion-out of the listening distance of others.

Although I've been a patron of the establishment throughout my life, I have never seen it in such disgrace. I told the guy that there was about an hour worth of labor needed to clean up the weeds, sweep the parking lot and do some very basic cleaning that would make the store more presentable...and asked if he could get it done? 

Immediately he deferred it.... I am the manager, not the owner of the store. Yet, it's not our store's job to clean up the parking lot-it's the owner's job... So, we don't clean up these parts that are a's not in our contract. We let him know, but he doesn't do it. He gets cited, it's not our problem.

I asked him how he thought he sounded making this the owner's problem when they are actively operating a store 7 days a week and have staff that could get off their behinds and spent just a few minutes making the difference? I asked for the business owner's name & number and the landlord's name & number? Of course he refused to provide those items....

Then I explained the technical procedures for getting inspectors out to the property, issuing citations, and the wasted time that will be exhausted to complete a few simple tasks of simply pulling weeds and sweeping the lot. I reminded him of all the folks who come in that store begging for a break, needing some help with basic necessities.... and asked him how many folks owed him money on tabs? 

I said, why don't you just offer one of those folks some credit towards improving your outward appearance in our community? Why don't you prevent the 3 ring circus from occurring, creating headaches for everyone? Why don't you just clean up the stuff and be done with it? 

He said that was a good idea and he'd speak to the people....we shall see this week.

Initially, he refused to unglue the cell phone from his ear and get up off his behind long enough to talk to me. Then, I had to ask him at least 3 times to make a few minutes without his cell phone in his ear, talking to his pal about their fun and excitement so that we could speak professionally.

Ultimately, he got the picture that I was serious when I let him know that, as a citizen, I could make this a very complicated, drawn out, citations & fines kind of nightmare for him... but was not about creating more problems, yet finding simple amicable solutions because they work best.

At that point, he got the simplicity of my point...We live in these neighborhoods, you make money from our residents, and you don't have enough respect for your own business to clean up a parking lot in a matter of less than an hour??? Come on, that's just not cutting the cheese...

I cannot wait to see if the establishment makes a difference in the days ahead...

But, I wonder if each of us addressed a common concern directly and expeditiously-what the results would be locally. 

( categories: )

The store remains the same, Day #2

Tonight, I went back to the store... I found it the same way....weeds & debris everywhere. I went inside... tonight, there were 4 guys working behind the register. I asked them who was the manager... and one guy pointed at 2 of them and said they were the owner's sons.... SO, I waited patiently as one took care of a customer and the other spoke with his pal for about 5 minutes....

Then, I asked the cashier which one of them I could talk to privately as managers...he pointed at his brother... So, I asked the brother to come outside for 5 minutes so that we could talk.... He came outside and I reintroduced myself, revealed all of the above about yesterday, and reexplained what it meant to be a productive, positive, and proactive player as a businessman in our community.

I outlined the weeds in 360 Degrees around the building, the glass throughout the parking lot, and the disrespect that I felt was coming from the owners/management for their lack of response about cleaning it up.

I told him that the idea of cleaning up that mess to prevent violations, citations, inspectors and other unnecessary grief was really simple... and I asked him how he thought it made them all look to from the they just don't care about the community that puts food on their tables...

He told me not to worry and that it would be cleaned up immediately... So, I shall see tomorrow... although I gave him until Thursday to make the changes... because if it has not been cleaned up by then...I will not hesitate to make the necessary calls... I offered to help get some volunteers to help him too...he said he didn't need them. We shall see. He was pretty nice about it...

Then we split...and then my kid wanted to buy an ice cream... So, as I went back in the store... he was on the phone telling someone how I had came there with the above situational....humor... prayerfully they will react reasonably!

thank you

 Thank you for doing this.

Not many would have the either the courage or tact.

Whatever happened to pride -

Whatever happened to pride - whether you're the manager, owner or just the storesitter for the day, don't these business people know that a little sweeping, a few flowers and just a wee bit of weed control really makes a big difference.

Just an idea, but what about a City Wide, small business parking/lot area clean up day.  Or, at least neighborhood busness clean up day.


I am so happy! Tonight... I went by there and the weeds were gone, the parking lot was clean, and the flower boxes were cleared of debris!!! It's a wonderful start to challenging our community! 

Even more delightful is the investment that JOE DE'S PIZZA & RESTAURANT is putting into their parking lot just across the way! 

In consideration of their efforts to do their part in our community, I invite the community to stop into their businesses and say a quick THANK YOU! 

KUDOS!!! (I am so happy that I don't have to call the inspectors!) Smiles.... THANK YOU ALL! 

It is great when you see

It is great when you see some of the smaller businesses actually get out and participate in cleaning up and making the neighborhood looke better.  It says a lot about them.  At least, their not trying to skirt the system and get over by not applying for and obtaining the proper permits required for operating their businesses.

I find it rather interesting that not only do the high-end bars/restaurant/nightclubs get free passes when it comes to compliance but we seem to be having a problem getting replaced street signs by the City of Cleveland Traffic Engineering Dept. as well. 

There was a walk-around months ago spot checking where these signs need to be replaced and what Mr. Mavec is holding up the process for is anybody's guess?  The OSS has  also made a formal request in writing tof the Second District Police Dept. to step up enforcement during prime time and weekends for illegal parking, blocking crosswalks and especially for illegally parking in handicap zones and on sidewalks, but we need the missing street signs to be replaced also to make this community safer.

So, thank you ANGELnWARD14 for bringing to our attention that the pizza shop is putting an effort into being a good neighbor. 




  Angel--I will try and swing by and take a photo.  Digital camera the chips need to be replaced?  My photos seem to be losing clarity.  I imagine it's just a factor of memory left on the chip...but I am guessing.

digital image decay?

Hello Laura,

Are your old digital images "fading" or do you mean the images you take today are less detailed than those you took last week?   I don't believe the files on the sd card or memory chip will deteriorate, but you could have a dirty lense, your white balance may be set wrong this week, or you may have set the camera to record at a smaller file size, or other issues with camera settings.

Photos of the clean up would be good. 

best, jeffb

Joe De's Pizza & Store Photos & Rally- 5pm Thursday for March

Dear Laura,

This is a great place to have a meeting! Maybe we should all meet there before the rally on Thursday... I'll go there early on Thursday for the Rally and if anyone wants to meet me there, they can. Then we'll walk to 2n District at 5:30 for the 6:00pm step off to the Soap Opera Laundry.

I wish I had thought to get photos last week.You'll have to remind me about that! 

Nick Nohra is the owner of Joe De's Pizza. He and his family are really nice, good, people! They used to have their business down on West 25th & Sackett by where the Cancer center for Metro is. They open after 4pm. So, it's best to go there a little after that! Nick says that they are still working on the parking lot but he welcomes you to visit! He speaks French, Lebanese, and English. What an array of languages! 

Alirghty guys, have a blessed one! 

Was this once "Favorito's

Was this once "Favorito's Pizza"?  That place stiffed the Freedrom Rider student newspaper at Lincoln-West for ads it bought!