During an early April visit to Spring Lake Park in South Omaha, there were an excessive number of tires noted in the spring hollow on the north side of F Street. The dozens of tires were spread about several places on the east side of the hollow, along the road to the swimming pool.
Tires in North F Street Hollow April 7, 2014
A request was subsequently made to the member of the Omaha City Council, asking why park visitors have to deal with this mess. The response received from Garry Gernandt was that "work orders" had been issued to remove the tires.
About a month later, a neighborhood resident was walking through the same area of the park, and also noticed the same tire mess. He also asked city officials about this trash.
"Parks and Public Works are aware of tires, coordinating removal efforts," Gernandt responded in a May 17 email that was also subsequently redistributed to a greater audience. "Please be patient," he added.
Nothing has apparently been done about this in the following weeks. The tires remain and are now being overgrown by vegetation. They are also providing potential breeding places for mosquitoes, due to stagnant water.
Tires in North F Street Hollow June 1, 2014
The following tires, discarded by in the park by some present in the neighborhood, are within a park wetland. Typically any activities associated with a Section 404 permit received from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, requires that wetland adjacent to jurisdictional wetlands be kept clear of trash, which would include tires and other debris. The presence of the tires may indicate that the City or its hired contractor are allowing violations of the permit requirements by not removing the debris.
It is still not known when the tires will be removed. The longer City of Omaha officials delay, the harder the task will be, unless they simply do not expect to remove them anytime soon.