|Yard behind the newsstand as it looked on April 6.|
During the Annandale Cleanup on Saturday morning, Cyra Doty and her fellow volunteers were disgusted by a huge pile of junk behind Anna ’N Dales Newsstand and Advance Electronics on 7025 Columbia Pike.What appears to be trash, though, is apparently part of a small engine repair business.
Doty calls the junkyard a major health concern and actually saw a huge raccoon, or possibly a fox, living in the mess on Saturday. Also of concern is the type of businesses that might be operating in the newsstand, as a member of the Fairfax County Sheriff’s Community Labor Force who was helping with the Annandale Cleanup was told he could be “taken care of inside” for $40.
Doty had actually complained about the junkyard to Fairfax County code compliance officials and Mason Supervisor Penny Gross about 10 months ago and followed up several times since then. Code compliance staff told Doty that the property owners have been given a chance to clean up the property.
|A mountain of old lawnmowers.|
The Annandale Cleanup volunteers also found a drain in the pavement behind the Goodwill store that appeared to be a grease pit for waste from the Juke Box Diner (7039 Columbia Pike). If that is the case, the waste will eventually drain into the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Worthy said the Fairfax County Health Department will investigate.
When the Annandale Blog showed up at the lot behind Anna ’N Dales Newsstand on Tuesday, we found huge piles of old lawnmowers, bicycles, and scooters—and George Guida, the proprietor of George’s Small Engine Repair.
|The scooter and bicycle section of George Guida's shop.|
Guida, a resident of Falls Church, said he’s been operating his business there for about three years. “This is a shop, not a junkyard,” he said. He charges $70 for a lawnmower tune-up and $60 for first-time customers. He also repairs and sells chainsaws, weed eaters, snow blowers, and whatever similar machines he finds.
Guida said the place used to be a lot messier, but a truckload of junk and two tents were removed about a month ago after a county code inspector told him to clean up. Guida said his former partner, who has left the area, used to go dumpster diving to find building materials which were piled up all over the yard.
According to Guida, the owners will let him stay—although it’s uncertain whether his rent, currently $300 a month, will be increased. “We’re going to stay here forever,” he said.
|George Guida with his invention: a combination bicycle/lawnmower.|