Major Cleaning at Heroin Hill in Eugene

July 27, 2011

By Kate Renner

GLENWOOD, Ore. — A piece of property in Glenwood, known as Heroin Hill, is going through a massive clean-up.

The lot has been vacant for decades, so transients now claim it as their home.

Over a year ago, KEZI started investigating who was responsible for the large hill atop Franklin Boulevard, which was a real eyesore for the community.

It’s private property, owned by Edward Macauley, but he’s in prison for pedophilia.  His brother, Bill, who has power of attorney, is elderly and can’t physically be involved.  So the owner’s nephew, David Macauley, has now taken responsibility after seeing our reports.

“I just saw a few pictures from before of what you guys covered, I had no idea it would be this much,” said Macauley.

Tuesday, KEZI got to see how Heroin Hill has been restored to its natural beauty.

During his two months of purging Heroin Hill, Macauley can testify to how it got its name.

“Lots and lots of needles as you’ve seen, almost a five-gallon bucket full in the whole property,” Macauley said.

Macauley worked out an agreement with Lane County in May. He’d clean it up, and they would help foot some of the bill.

“We rented an excavator, a dozer, brought in a trailer behind the dozer, and we could just get down to the garbage,” Macauley said.

The countless hours of digging, hauling, and dumping, added up.

“In reality 60-70 tons of garbage,” Macauley said.

Sixty tons is equal to 10 elephants which is a lot of work.

“Just been trying to keep my nose to the grindstone,” Macauley said.

“We have a group of people out here who are really motivated to do a good job and they’ve got the skills to do it,” said Jeff Bishop.

The area looks completely different.  It used to be sort of like a tent city. One area had a cluster of tents and back there was kind of like a local land-fill. But the Macauleys have come in and completely cleaned-up the trash and cleared out some of the vegetation, and now the burden of keeping it cleaned-up falls on the family.

“Just have to make a couple walk-throughs, and anywhere that looks like a point of entry, we posted signs some people know it’s private property,” Macauley said.

But will that be enough?  “Time remains to be seen, I guess. I hope they’re leaving for good,” Macauley said.

Lane County Waste Management expects the site to be cleared out within a month.  They are anticipating a clean-up price tag of under $5,000.

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