City Tries To Curb 'Spite Landscaping'

A city in the midst of a revitalization effort has targeted landscape designs allegedly aimed at spiting the neighbors.

August 18, 2008, 1:00 PM PDT

By Larry Schooler


"The Mesquite City Council recently adopted an ordinance designed in part to curb "spite" landscaping, the kind intended to annoy neighbors.

City officials put Tyronne Meade's front yard in that category. They contend that he went overboard with his vegetation and water features as part of a dispute with a neighbor.

Mr. Meade, who moved to Mesquite with his wife after fleeing Hurricane Katrina, said he was dumbfounded by the accusation. He said that his front yard on Richard Street, covered with ponds, plants and black plastic tarp, is merely an effort to replicate some of the landscaping he had at his Louisiana home.

'But the problem is that he went way out of the boundaries of what he was permitted for,' said Mesquite spokesman Greg Sowell. 'He turned his entire yard into one huge ornamental water feature. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and we realize we can't completely satisfy everyone.'

Mr. Sowell said the new landscape ordinance is part of an effort to protect the integrity of neighborhoods. That is one goal of Project Renewal, the city program to attract beneficial development, revitalize older commercial and residential areas and update the city's image.

Thursday, August 14, 2008 in Dallas Morning News

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