Overgrown park a nuisance for neighbors - WNEM TV 5

Overgrown park a nuisance for neighbors

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A Mid-Michigan park is in need of some serious maintenance.

Neighbors said nothing is being done to fix the situation. They said the overgrown park isn't just a bad sight to see, it's also taking away from their quality of life.

Knee-high grass has overtaken the soccer fields at Wickes Park in Saginaw. With the neglect, one man said animals and mosquitoes are becoming a nuisance.

Phillip Stricker lives a block away and he said the field hasn't been cut at all this year. He also said his complaints to the city of Saginaw are falling on deaf ears.

"They tell me they can't come up with the money to pay to cut this. And they talk about the Zika virus. In my place you can hardly come out during the day time, at night time forget it," Stricker said.

The city said money was the issue, but not the only one.

Since the park doesn't get a lot of use and with budgets being tight, they decided to let the area grow. At the end of the year they let a local farmer come in and cut down the grass and bale hay out of it.

"In order to continue to cut all of these parks, every square inch of them, even if I had the budget, I don't know that it would make sense to do because it's not the right thing to do. This was once a forest and once trees, and so all I'm doing, and especially Wickes Park, that's close to the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge that has deer and animals, and it's not being used. So even if I had the budget to cut that, I probably wouldn't," said Phil Karwat, director of Saginaw Public Works.

Karwat said the city will also be removing the frames of the soccer goals to help with appearances.

Stricker said he and his neighbors are the ones paying the price by the city's decision.

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