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1998-09-25
Long Island, NY. Home Depot Bad Neighbor

Newsday newspaper has published an article focusing on the cold reception many residents on Long Island have given to their new neighbor, the orange monster -- Home Depot. The article sites unhappy neighbors in Freeport, Commack, Seldon and other towns that have found Home Depot to be big, noisy and unpleasant. "You get so aggravatd," says William Lebenns of Selden, "you want to kill." The only thing these people did wrong was find themselves with Home Depot as a neighbor. And they certainly have not put out the Welcome Wagon to their new corporate neighbor. Nine of 11 Home Depot stores on Long Island have been criticized by neighbors interviewed by the newspaper. One resident of Bay Shore, Long Island has filed a criminal complaint against HD for operating a street sweeper in its parking lot before 5 am, which just proves that to outbox Home Depot you have to get up pretty early in the morning. Hemstead cited Depot for storing and selling merchandise in its parking lot. The charges are now in Second District Court. "It's terrible," complains the manager of a senior citizen's apartment complex. "Workers are screaming and yelling, telling jokes, throwing palettes. My kids can't sleep." Wayne Trevelyan, whose house is just one fence away from Home Depot, says "that type of business does not fit in the backyard of a residential area." In East Meadow, resident Ron Lupski lives across the street from a Home Depot loading area. He tried to have the store's permit revoked. "It's a dirty, noise operation. They belong in industrial parks." Ironically, Home Depot convinced town officials in one Long Island community that they should be declared a lumberyard instead of a retail home improvement center, because the land they wanted was zoned only for wholesale activity and industry, and not for home centers. Tenants at the Liberty Park apartments told Newsday they have been complaining about Home Depot for 6 years. The Nassau, NY police department complained that HD was "sort of playng deaf, dumb and blind" when comfronted with complaints about delivery trucks idling in their parking lot. "They're saying it's trucks delivering to them, so they're not responsible for them," said the police. These kind of uneasy neigborhood relations seems to be a hallmark of Life With Home Depot.Similar complaints about code violations and noise and clutter have appeared in many other states across the country.

What you can do: The lesson here? The best way to reduce the stress of having Home Depot as a neighbor is to stop them from building in your community in the first place. For a full copy of the Newsday article by reporter Tom Frank, go to the Newsday website for the Sept. 23, 1998 article.










 
 
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