An alley in east London is still a major problem, even though it’s been a decade since action to help clean up the area was first requested.

The needle-filled alley on Dundas Street just east of Adelaide Street, is home to drug deals, prostitution and theft. And it’s there despite new development and investment in Old East Village.

“In five to 10 years, this will be the destination of choice, not only for London, but the whole area,” says Ward 4 Councillor Stephen Orser.

But the alley is standing in the way of progress, he adds.

“There’s a lot of negative activity,” he says. “Once they get in here and they inject themselves with this stuff, they then go into the general population and that's where we have problems.

 “Less than a month ago, I had a man complain that he was punched out right in front of here as he was going to work. A week-and-a-half ago, a man was stabbed coming out of Canada Trust. This is the core problem we have to deal with.”

A CTV News tripod  was even stolen from the alley Thursday while a crew worked on the story.

Surveillance cameras were rejected for the Old East Village area in 2003 and again in 2012 during budget deliberations.

Last month, city council approved the cost of two cameras for the downtown core at $5,000.

“City council should be putting cameras in the Old East Village. The BIA wants them; business owners want them. The ward councillor wants them, but council puts them downtown,” Orser says.

Deputy London Police Chief Brent Shea says cameras would help prevent crime.

“We believe there's some deterrent factor there and it certainly assists us in investigations.”

Orser says he will ask city administration to re-examine the issue.