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Garbage day is always a mess at Eglinton Ave. plaza

When it comes to putting out garbage for collection, tenants of the Knob Hill Plaza are some of the biggest slobs in town.

The venerable strip mall is on the south side of Eglinton Ave., west of Brimley Rd., and has seen a lot of change since it was built in the 1950s. But it remains a local institution.

Instead of arranging for private garbage collection from an alley that runs behind the stores, retail tenants rely on curbside pickup from the city, which means they must adhere to the city’s rules for putting it out, including using bins.

It would be an understatement to say that some of them are not particularly fastidious about their trash. Anyone who has strolled past the plaza on a Thursday has had to weave around piles of garbage on the sidewalk, much of it in small shopping bags. It’s unclear which tenants are making the mess.

Gary P. emailed to say he’s been in touch with the local city councillor about “the epidemic of garbage piling up at the plaza,” adding that an online search about it turned up a column we wrote about the same situation, in late 2013.

“I guess nothing was learned,” he said, noting that a huge amount of garbage ends up strewn across the sidewalk and the plaza parking lot every week, and hardly any of it is in bins, as required by the city.

We went there last Thursday and found a disgusting mess along the sidewalk and the front of the parking lot. Garbage in shopping bags, black plastic bags and cardboard boxes was scattered all over the street.

Some of the trash bags containing food waste had been torn open by rodents who are obviously feasting on the buffet; we found chicken wing bones strewn around a bag that had been ripped apart.

Not only is it an obvious violation of the rules governing garbage put out for collection, but a public health issue.

STATUS: We’ve asked solid waste management why the plaza tenants are allowed to get away with it, and have also asked it to vigorously enforce the city’s bylaws. But we’re skeptical that there’s any real will to get them to do things the right way, or it would already be done by now.

What’s broken in your neighbourhood? Wherever you are in Greater Toronto, we want to know. Email to jlakey@thestar.ca or follow @TOStarFixer on Twitter