This Is How A Neighborhood Declines: The 2200 Block Of Pratt Street

by Alex Lloyd Gross

First you have trash and junk dumped on property.  The you have abandoned , vacant lots . Next come drugs and homeless encampments.  A tossed away crouch or broken furniture is a lot more comfortable than a steam grate.  Sometimes it takes a few days for a neighborhood to fall into decline, other times it takes longer.  In Tacony, the 2200 block of Pratt Street is well on it’s way to making life miserable for tax paying residents less than 100 feet away.


At lest three piles of trash have been dumped at that location within the past few months. The trash spills into the street, making it hard for motorists to navigate around it.  Come holiday time, that block is littered with spent remains of fireworks.  During the day, there are no people around the trash piles. At night, sometimes that is not the case.

As some areas work to clean drug users and dealers from their block, the 2200 block of Pratt Street seems to almost welcome them.  There are no houses and a vacant lot sits on one side of the street.  The nearby homes seem far away. In reality they are about 100 feet away, depending on where the next trash pile is.  Rats, and other vermin  are easily attracted to areas like this and will travel to and from the 100 feet. in search of food.


The city uses surveillance cameras elsewhere, and one would think this is a good use of resources to use to catch short dumpers.  Residents nearby are sick of looking at this and want  it cleaned up.  The street runs one block and cuts into Tacony Street,  from James Street. to face a chemical plant. To compound the issue, the street sign for James Street is faded and can no longer be read.