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Enhancing waste collection and removal: Additional funding for Street Cleaning Grant Program approved

May 18 2016

Downtown Vancouver beach

City Council has approved a 50% increase to the annual Street Cleaning Grant Program, bringing the total amount of grants awarded in 2016 to $695,000.

The program expansion highlights our commitment to support initiatives that promote:

  • Public realm cleanliness
  • Inclusivity
  • Healthy environment
  • Economic development

It also fits with our plan to make Vancouver the greenest and cleanest city.

About the Street Cleaning Grant Program

The Street Cleaning Grant Program provides funding to non-profit agencies to support litter collection in the Downtown East Side and Business Improvement Areas (BIAs).

The focus of the grant program is to improve street cleanliness through micro-cleaning while providing jobs for youth and adults with barriers to traditional employment.

The expansion will help:

  • Existing service providers with maintaining their programs
  • Support additional micro-cleaning in key areas of the city
  • Support new waste diversion initiatives that are important to our Zero Waste goal

What is micro-cleaning

Micro-cleaning involves the daily collection of:

  • Difficult to manage litter like needles and cigarette butts
  • General litter on foot using brooms, shovels, and wheeled garbage carts

Strategic approach

Council approved additional funding for 2016 to address public realm cleanliness and the expanded grant program is a component of the overall plan. The plan takes a widely accepted, strategic approach to litter reduction by considering four key components:

  1. Services and infrastructure
  2. Communication and education
  3. Enforcement
  4. Partnerships and collaboration

Increasing service levels

As part of the 2016 Budget, Council approved additional funding to support expanded efforts towards cleanliness in public areas of the city and to meet the growing demand for increased service levels.

These include:

  • Collection of illegally dumped and abandoned waste, such as:
    • Furniture
    • Mattresses
    • Construction waste
  • Increasing the number of waste receptacles placed throughout the city
  • General increases in litter-related services as we head into summer, such as:
    • Street sweeping
    • Flushing
    • Manual litter collection

Adding more litter receptacles

There are currently 3,000 litter receptacles throughout the city with plans to add approximately:

  • 300 more sidewalk litter receptacles
  • 250 more high-season receptacles along:
    • Beaches
    • Seawalls
    • In parks

Monitoring illegal dumping and abandoned waste

Staff will be monitoring high traffic areas such as parks, beaches, and key spots downtown to quickly address overflowing waste receptacles so they remain clean.

Enforcement will be increased with a focus on illegally dumped and abandoned waste throughout the city. In 2016, so far there have been three prosecutions and a total of $7,500 in fines issued to individuals and organizations found dumping waste on public property.

Help keep our city clean

While we work to keep our streets clean through street sweeping, graffiti removal, and more, please pitch in and do your part by reducing and responsibly disposing of your waste.

As summer approaches, more people will be out and about enjoying Vancouver's attractions, activities, and scenery. When gathering in parks and public spaces, please help keep our city clean:

  • Use the waste and recycling receptacles provided
  • If you see litter on the street, consider picking it up and placing it in a container
  • Think about operating on the "Pack-it-in/Pack-it-out" premise

Participate in Keep Vancouver Spectacular

Participate in our year-round community-based litter and graffiti reduction program Keep Vancouver Spectacular by cleaning up garbage, removing graffiti and preventing dumping, you help to keep Vancouver clean, green and spectacular.