Denby Park blight – photo series by Tricia Duncan

May 14, 2013

See Tricia’s full article, with photos, on her website, A little Sugar a little Spice.

Where do you want your children to grow up? Somewhere safe? Somewhere that they can ride their bikes to their friends house? Somewhere you can send them out to play and come home when the street lights come on? Where you don’t have to worry about your general safety 24/7?
Not here…. Maybe you haven’t heard of Denby Park or Wards Corner. This is our neighborhood. Where we live, work and play. In fear. The city for the last few years has promised to remove the run down section 8 apartments that even the cops hate going into. Vast mazes of blight and trash create a hiding place for crime.
They tore down 7. They are tearing down 7 more. However due to budget cut’s we are loosing the war on crime in our wonderful little spot in Norfolk. Or what was once wonderful and could be again.
When I took these photos I did not venture far in. It was EARLY in the morning and I was armed with a tazer. You heard right. You don’t go wandering around this area. It was a risk I took with my camera equipment because it  needs to be seen. People need to see what the confines of this area are like. I plan to do more as I go. I plan to take shots of the beauty in our little neighborhood also.
This photo series will be special too me. I hope it shows that even in the less then wanted areas of the city, beauty can reside. I also wish to show WHY the city should finish their promise to the residents of Ward’s Corner and the surrounding neighborhoods.
Read the rest of Tricia’s article, with photos, on her website, A little Sugar a little Spice.

5 shot in attempted robbery in “Texas streets” area of Denby Park

April 15, 2013

The Virginian-Pilot is reporting:

Seven people were shot late Saturday in two separate incidents that happened about 20 minutes and 2 miles apart.

None of the injuries was life-threatening, police said.

The first incident occurred about 11:30 p.m., in the 7800 block of San Antonio Blvd. Five people were taken to a hospital, including two men who have been charged.

The two are suspects in an attempted home robbery that apparently led to the shooting, a news release said. The three other shooting victims appear to have been the robbery’s targets.

Trenton J. Ore, 25, and Joven K. Covington, 23, both of Norfolk, face charges including eight counts of use of a firearm, four counts of robbery and three counts of malicious wounding.

The second shooting happened about 11:50 p.m. in the 1300 block of nearby Johns­tons Road.

Detectives said two men had been in a verbal altercation with another man during a family gathering. The two men followed the third man after he left a home on Johnstons Road, but the third man later shot the other two, police said. A bullet also struck an occupied vehicle, but nobody inside was injured.

Darryl Lee Speller, 22, of Norfolk faces charges including two counts each of malicious wounding, shooting into an occupied vehicle and use of a firearm. He is related to the two shooting victims, police said.

City takes second bite out of crime in Denby Park

January 29, 2013
Denby Park properties to be purchased by City of Norfolk.  RED highlighted properties are to be purchased in 2013.  BLUE highlighted properties were purchased in 2011.

Denby Park properties to be purchased by City of Norfolk. RED highlighted properties are to be purchased in 2013. BLUE highlighted properties were purchased in 2011.

City Council will be voting on January 29, 2013 on the second round of derelict property purchases in the Denby Park neighborhood.  The addresses of the properties to be purchases are:  308 E. Little Creek Road, 317 E. Little Creek Road, 319 E. Little Creek Road, 325 E. Little Creek Road, 328 Fort Worth Ave, 334 Fort Worth Ave, and 338 Fort Worth Ave.

These 2013 purchases are in addition to the properties on San Antonio Boulevard which were purchased in 2011 and eventually torn down.

These purchases are in accordance with the 2004 Wards Corner Comprehensive plan.

The full press release is below:

NORFOLK –The City of Norfolk has reached agreements to purchase seven properties located in the 300 blocks of Fort Worth Avenue and East Little Creek Road in the Denby Park section of the city.  These acquisitions further the Greater Wards Corner Neighborhood Plan and the city’s ongoing efforts to foster safe and healthy neighborhoods which will sustain future generations.

The agreements include the acquisition of 37 apartments on seven properties for $1.45 million.  City Council will vote on the purchase and sale agreements during the Council session scheduled for Tuesday, January 29, 2013.

The property owners are working with their tenants to relocate them.  Once the properties are vacant, the city will conduct an environmental impact study then the apartments will be demolished.

In August 2011, the City of Norfolk purchased 68 apartment units on seven properties in the 300 block of San Antonio Boulevard for $2.68 million.  Those apartments were demolished in April 2012.   The city is working with the community to determine the best use for the open space.

Crime reports continue in 300 blocks of Little Creek, San Antonio, and Fort Worth

January 5, 2012

December 2011 brought an increase in the number of reported crimes in the 300 block of E. Little Creek Road, San Antonio Blvd and Fort Worth Ave from 15 in November to 17 in December.  These three blocks continue to exert downward pressure on surrounding communities.

We must continue to focus on the acquisition of the substandard housing in these three blocks that breed crime and blight.  The stats are below:

Crime                   Location                      Date/time
VANDALISM               300 BLOCK E LITTLE CREEK RD   12/24/2011 19:00:00
VANDALISM               300 BLOCK FORT WORTH AV       12/22/2011 23:07:00
ROBBERY-INDIVIDUAL      300 BLOCK FORT WORTH AV       12/22/2011 10:50:00
LARCENY (ALL OTHERS)    300 BLOCK E LITTLE CREEK RD   12/18/2011 13:40:00
LARCENY-FROM AUTO       300 BLOCK SAN ANTONIO BLVD    12/17/2011 23:00:00
VANDALISM               300 BLOCK SAN ANTONIO BLVD    12/15/2011 22:50:00
LARCENY (ALL OTHERS)    300 BLOCK SAN ANTONIO BLVD    12/13/2011 13:00:00
VANDALISM               300 BLOCK SAN ANTONIO BLVD    12/13/2011 11:56:00
NARCOTICS VIOLATIONS    300 BLOCK FORT WORTH AV       12/12/2011 10:18:00
NARCOTICS VIOLATIONS    300 BLOCK FORT WORTH AV       12/12/2011 10:18:00
VANDALISM               300 BLOCK E LITTLE CREEK RD   12/6/2011 22:38:00
December 2011 crime stats for the 300 blocks of San Antonio, Forth Worth, and E. Little Creek Road

December 2011 crime stats for the 300 blocks of San Antonio, Forth Worth, and E. Little Creek Road


VP reporting Officer involved in shooting on Texas streets

September 6, 2011

The Pilot is reporting:

Police are on the scene of an officer-involved shooting in the 400 block of Fort Worth Ave, dispatchers said.

The incident happened around 7 a.m., but police have not released any information.

It was unclear whether anyone was injured.

Fort Worth Avenue is near East Little Creek Road.

Update, 9/6/2011 @ 11:26am:

The Virginian-Pilot has the following details:

An officer was sent to the South Wind complex in the 400 block of Fort Worth Ave. around 7 a.m. on a report that someone was tampering with a vehicle, said Officer Chris Amos, police spokesman. The officer parked perpendicular behind the vehicle, had gotten out of his patrol car and began verbally challenging the man when he put his vehicle in reverse.

The car went backward and hit the police vehicle, pushing it into the officer, who fired, Amos said. The officer wasn’t hurt.

The man pushed the patrol car out of the way and was able to turn around and head west on Fort Worth a short distance before crashing into a vehicle parked on the street, Amos said. The officer followed, but no other shots were fired.

Police broke out the driver’s side window of the vehicle to try to help the man, who died inside the car.

Replace Texas Streets with new ballfields

May 27, 2010
Fleet Park

Fleet Park

The Navy is shutting down Fleet Park and displacing 6 baseball fields used by the Fleet Park Little League with its 550 Little Leaguers.  The Ocean View Little League lost their playing fields last year as the Navy is no longer allowing them to use Navy fields either.  This was reported on by the Virginian-Pilot here.

Remember the Comprehensive Plan(Page 28):

. . . the high-density walkup apartments constructed in the Texas Streets section of Denby Park are, for the most part, not desirable housing. They have been built too close together, without appropriate provision of open space, and without amenities. The maze-like character of the resulting development, its proximity to highly-travelled Little Creek Road and to Interstate – 64 make it unfortunately suitable for drug dealing and for serving as a base for other criminal activity. The Norfolk police report that the situation in these buildings is getting worse. They recommend major change: the acquisition and demolition of these buildings, before the situation has even more adverse impacts on the surrounding neighborhoods.
Texas Streets Section of Denby Park

Texas Streets Section of Denby Park

The City of Norfolk now has a need for new ballfields for our children.  Let’s consider following the Comprehensive Plan, acquire and demolish the sub-standard housing in the Texas Streets, and build ballfields to replace those lost at Fleet Park.  It would create a centralized place for Fleet Park and Ocean View Little Leagues to call home.

Update: This is an idea that is being floated to gauge support.  This has not been voted on or endorsed in any way by Wards Corner Now or any civic league.

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