Hillsborough County, Florida - The clanks and clunks of demolition are music to the ears of some folks in the Orient Park neighborhood. They're glad to see a troublesome, vacant house crumble.
"Thugs go back in there, drugs, prostitutes... you name it, they were back there," says neighborhood resident Diane Barnes.
The demolition of the house on East 26th Avenue is just part of an ongoing effort by Hillsborough Code Enforcement to clean up the Orient Park neighborhood. Since April 2nd, work crews have also been picking up all sorts of debris.
"I think it's long overdue, it's very much needed," says resident Christine Smith. "And I'm just thrilled, because as a widow, I have no one to help me."
Just to give you an idea of how much trash and junk can accumulate in a neighborhood, in just the past two weeks, code enforcement has picked up more than 700 tires. The pile looks like a mini-mountain.
Officials call the program Fight the Blight and they expect the county's work to encourage residents to also join the fray.
"We're hoping the community will come together and take a little more pride and say let's get out and do our part as well," says code enforcement supervisor Bill Langford.
And this whole spruce-up campaign does appear to be a hit with longtime residents, because they say no one likes to live in a dump. Barnes says, "It's not the Ritz or anything, but it's our neighborhood."