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Philadelphia revives street sweeping program, complete with leafblowers
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Philadelphia revives street sweeping program, complete with leafblowers

City to continue street sweeping pilot with trucks, push brooms and leaf blowers; asking residents to move cars.

In an effort to clean up our dirty reputation, Philadelphia announced that they’ll resume a street sweeping pilot on August 9th. The Streets Department phase two pilot will target 14 neighborhoods that were identified as high concentrations of litter from the Litter Index.

Phase one of the pilot cleaned 1189 blocks regularly and picked up over 1.9 million pounds of trash and litter, according to the Streets Department.

This time, the street sweeping program will include mechanical sweeping (trucks), sidewalk litter, trash removal, and trash compactor removal. The program’s goal is to reduce litter on streets, as well as trash from entering water systems.

Tools used will be mechanical brooms (large and small), sidewalk sweepers, push brooms, and trash compactors used to remove illegally dumped materials, and on occasion. Some of the streets will use the controversial “backpack”/leaf blowers, despite critics mentioning the dirt and pollutants of these machines. Residents will need to move vehicles on some routes, alternating dates and times to make it easier for residents.

Slide from a City press conference on August 2nd

The pilot will launch in four areas on August 9th:

  • North Central: Broad to 22nd Sts from Glenwood Ave to Diamond St 
  • South Philly: McKean St to Oregon Ave from 4th to 8th Sts
  • Southwest: Woodland Ave to Kingsessing Ave from 49th St to Cemetery Ave. 
  • Strawberry Mansion: Diamond Ave to Lehigh St from Sedgley to 33rd Sts 

After the initial pilot, street sweeping in ten additional areas will be rolled out.

  • Frankford: Bridge to Adams from Griscom St to Torresdale Ave
  • Germantown: Berkley to Chelten from Pulaski to Wakefield 
  • Kensington: 2nd St to Kensington from Tioga to Lehigh Ave
  • Logan: Godfrey to Roosevelt Blvd from Broad to 5th Sts  
  • Nicetown: Broad to Clarissa from Hunting Park Ave to Windrim St.
  • Paschall: 58th to 70th from Greenway Ave to Dicks Ave
  • Point Breeze: Christian to McKean from Broad to 24th Sts. 
  • Port Richmond: Kensington to Aramingo from Tioga to Lehigh 
  • West Fairhill: 5th to 13th Sts from Glenwood to Susquehanna 
  • West Philly: Parkside to Girard Ave from 52nd to 40th Sts.

Cover photo: City of Philadelphia


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Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake. View all posts by Julie Hancher

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