Castle Of Deep Cove’ Issued Clean Up Order By District Of North Vancouver
It has been an issue for almost 20 years but now the District of North Vancouver has stepped in to force a homeowner to clean up his property.
The property along Panorama Drive is known as the Castle of Deep Cove and its owner, Chuck Band, and his wife bought and built the 5,000 square foot home in 1978. But in the last 20 years, Band has been packing his yard and driveway with his hoarding collection of “treasures” like cars, tools and equipment — all of which he says he needs.
But some of Band’s Deep Cove neighbors have had enough. His next door neighbor needed to put up a retaining wall between the two properties to stabilize their own slope and a neighbor, who lives below, says she’s been flooded by the creek before due to an improper culvert Band put in himself.
“Safety is number one and the possibility of this coming down and going across the road could cause so much damage,” Deep Cove resident Margie Goodman told Global News.
“There are 27 people that live across the road.”
On June 1 the DNV handed Band a notice that gives him a little more than a month to clean up his property and get the proper environmental permits for work he has been doing on the creek in his yard. If Band does not comply the district will do it for him and Band will have to foot the bill.
“It’s almost impossible to remove it all,” an exasperated Band says. “There’s a lot of water to go under the bridge between now and then.”
Asked if he’s a hoarder and Band is quick to say no and that he needs and uses all of the items.
“… some of this stuff I’ve been dealing with people going to come and get. But I have a lot of equipment because that’s been my life. I weld, I do carpentry work. I have band saws and table saws for all of this work.”
This is not the first time Band has been ordered to clean up his property. He was issued an order in 2003.
But there is help for people who accumulate too much ‘stuff’.
The City of Vancouver and Coastal Health launched a task for a few years ago called the Hoarding Action Response Team (HART) in 2011. The team deals with 300 hoarding situations a year and says there is a way to do it that helps the homeowners and communities long term.
“That person won’t correct it unless they have the help of someone else like a counselor or a mentor, someone that can show them how to start,” explains HART Fire Capt. Doug Booth.
“The problem is usually procrastination or being overwhelmed.”
Despite the district’s order Band says the issue will not be solved by July 15.
Author – Jeffrey Avery