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Blocked in by wall


Maria Bradshaw

Blocked in by wall

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LIFE?HAS CHANGED DRAMATICALLY for some residents of Melvins Avenue, Black Rock, St Michael.
For several years they were traversing an unoccupied lot to get to and from their homes, but two months ago developers moved in and erected a huge wall barricade across the lot, blocking the access points to their homes.
Upset residents said they pleaded with the developer to leave enough space for a fire truck or an ambulance to get to their homes but all that was left was a small space, no more than a foot wide, which even the residents have to squeeze through.
“It is their land so there is nothing we can do,” said a woman, who pointed out that she had lived in the area for more than 20 years.
An elderly woman pointed out that she was shocked when the ten-foot-tall wall was erected in front of her house.
“I?just see it going up and it block out all of the view. I?don’t know what is happening,” she cried.
Resident Ida Wharton, who has lived in the area for 35 years, has been left wondering how she
will be able to do any repairs to the side of her home, which is next to the barricade.
She explained that when she rented the land, the landlord pointed out the landmarks to her, but when the new developer moved in, the barricade was placed on a portion of the land that she thought was hers.
“The man told me that it was his land and that a part of my roof was over at him,” she said.
Investigations revealed that a rental car business was being developed on the huge lot, which extends from the main road at Black Rock to Melvins Avenue.
When contacted by telephone, a man answering to the name Havaliwala explained that the land was owned by a company called Terrain Holdings and that he was one of the directors of the company.
He said he had spoken to all of the affected residents and “explained to them certain things and showed them my plans”.
“They asked us to leave enough space for a fire truck to get to their houses, but I?told them that there was nothing we could do,” Havaliwala said.
He said he advised the residents to ask another resident to allow them to access their homes from his land.
“A fire truck does not have to get to the house; they can use a hose,” he reasoned, as he complained that he had witnessed persons jumping over the wall since it had been built.
He said the company had recently bought the land and was yet to decide what it was going to do with it.

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