All posts for the month December, 2012

Junkman in the alley, part two

Published December 18, 2012 by justicewg


I’m cleaning out the basement, so I can start the new year with less clutter. Today I had another encounter with a junkman in the alley.

This time I had an old print dryer to discard, along with other metal crap, and I posted the stuff on the “free” section of Columbus Craigslist. It took about 30 minutes for the first replies to come in.

I met the guy in the alley, he was driving an old beat up van that was emitting a small cloud of steam from some leak in the system. He had a sad story that he told as he was looking at my old truck covered in a tarp, he said he used to own a garage and did restoration on old vehicles. The set of tools needed to do that sort of restoration work is considerable, so he must have been in much better financial shape in years past. He said he lost his job, the garage, all the tools. It didn’t sound like he had much left except the old van and a phone that allowed him to check the CL listings for scrap.

His wife was with him, and she noticed I had a bag of old toys set out. She was very grateful when I said she could take them too, she said this Christmas would be lean for her kids, so anything, even old toys from the alley, would be appreciated.

I know what you are thinking – those people are giving you a sad story in the hopes of getting some charity. They probably make a good living, tax free!

If they were pulling a fake sob story, they were doing a convincing job of it. Everything I saw told me they were desperately poor people who really needed every cent they could get from scrapping in alleys.

Grandview doesn’t allow junkmen to roam the alleys in the city, they can face a hefty fine if they are caught. If you post a message offering stuff and people come to pick it up, it would not be illegal.

My suggestion to anyone who will be throwing out good sized metal junk is to take the time to make a post on Craigslist in the “free” section. You don’t have to meet the scary poor people when they come to pick the stuff up, you can just tell them to get it from the alley by themselves. The metal will be recycled, instead of clogging up the lanfill, so it is the environmentally correct thing to do. And, quite possibly, the people who pick the stuff up will be really poor people who will be able to scrape another day’s worth of food and rent out of the stuff you will be tossing away.

( Junkman in the Alley pt 1)

(Who owns the trash in alleys?)


Connector for Grandview bike trail under construction

Published December 12, 2012 by justicewg

I was checking out the Grandview bike trail and I found this construction going on. A new bridge is being built on Grandview’s bike trail!

Scioto bike bridge

What, you didn’t know there is a Grandview bike trail by the river? Technically it is not Grandview’s bike trail, it’s in Columbus, but that part of the city between 33 and the Grandview Ave bridge crossing the Scioto is too disconnected from the west side to remain part of Columbus, so it’s Grandview’s by default. The bike trail is very obscure, and doesn’t go anywhere that helps you travel across the city, but it will soon. The trail starts between the new gas station and the 670 exit onto Grandview Ave., passes under the bridge and follows the Scioto river to the back of the Rivers Edge business park. Last year a bridge was built that crossed the Scioto to McKinley, but it still was a path with no clear reason for existence.


For a long time there was a section of the bike trail that traveled west from downtown that ended near the main post office, it was hinted this stub would somehow be connected to the Grandview bike trail, but it was unclear how this would be done. Columbus Recreation & Parks Department has announced the connector is now under construction, and will allow you to bike from downtown along the Scioto river all the way to 5th Ave. (with a stop on Grandview Ave. for those who want to brave the traffic in that area).

The path of the new connector will use two bridges to finish this section. That small section of land south of the river always intrigued me when I was on 670 going west, it is completely inaccessible to anyone without a boat. With the completion of the new bridges it will be opened up for exploration.

I hereby propose that the city of Grandview should recruit an army, and occupy that newly opened land as a Grandview city park. Who is with me?

(Nov. 2013) The bike trail is now open to downtown.