90-year-old homeowner taking on Norfolk City Hall after he says they damaged his property

10 On Your Side

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — An Ocean View resident is blaming Norfolk for damaging his property. 

He claims the issue stems from a pit dug out by crews on a vacant piece of land near his home. 

You know you’re at James Beasley’s home on Dune Street when you see “sign petition to fix the hole.”  About 500 people have signed up so far, and 10 On Your Side found Beasley sitting on his porch.

“I shouldn’t have to pay for something the city has caused, and that’s the way I feel about it.  The city has caused the damage,” he said. 

Beasley claims when the city developed the Dune Street Constructed Wetland, the city took all the green area next to Beasley’s home, dug it out about 22 feet deep, and then allowed it to become wetlands that Beasley claims led to erosion. 

Beasley says the erosion from the project cracked his driveway, and damaged the foundation. 

Beasley has bills from JES Foundation Repair that total $24,000, but that does not include any improvements to the driveway. 

However, the city sent 10 On Your Side pictures of a cracked driveway before the project even began, but the city does not have before and after pictures of alleged home damage. The Beasleys contacted 10 On Your Side for help.

A city attorney spoke with the Beasleys Wednesday, are aware of their concerns, and have received a claim from them.

“I want that hole filled up, and I want them to pay for whatever I’ve had to put out to jack up this house and things like that.” 

Beasley may be 90 years old, but he says he’s ready for a fight. He moved into the house in 1968, and hasn’t had any problems until two years ago when the city put in the drainage area, which initially aimed to improve water quality then was changed to wetlands.” 

Beasley says there is no beauty with what’s here now, it is only a nuisance for massive amounts of mosquitoes.

“Do you think the city manager would want to have this mess on the side of his property, or City Council, or city attorney?  Would any of them want this on the side of their homes?” he asked.

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