Official calls for extra trash pickups in Midwood

August 27, 2013 Editorial Staff
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Some neighborhoods in Brooklyn have twice daily pickup on weekdays on their commercial strips, but, in Midwood, there isn’t even one pickup each weekday.

Councilmember David Greenfield held a press conference under the Avenue J overpass on Tuesday, August 13, bringing attention to the issue.

“This is a thriving community like any other in New York City, but the streets are still dirty,” said Greenfield, drawing attention to the excess garbage that lined the streets due to overflowing trash cans.

The cans are emptied four times a week, according to Kathy Dawkins, a Department of Sanitation spokesperson, who told this paper that household collection trucks pick up from the corner cans on Tuesdays and Fridays, with “dedicated litter basket truck” service on Sundays and Mondays.

That’s not enough, said Greenfield, who contended that garbage on the streets is not due to litter but, instead, is the outpouring from the trash cans, and said that “you are basically asking people to litter,” because they have no other choice.

“All we are asking Sanitation is to be treated the same as any other community,” said Greenfield.

“It is not very appetizing to see rats on your way to dinner,” said Greenfield, noting that he and his wife saw rats scurrying along the Avenue J commercial strip this past week as they went out.  He compared the commercial strip in Midwood to any in Manhattan, stating the obvious difference: those in Manhattan are much cleaner.

“I never saw such a mess,” said Marilyn Leiman who has lived in Midwood for over 50 years. “I am so ashamed when they (tourists) come here and see what it looks like.”

Linda Goodman, executive director of Midwood Development Corporation, agreed with Greenfield and said she believes that there are three parts to the problem. First, there is a lack of resources; second, there needs to be more participation on the merchants’ parts; and finally, the community itself needs to do its part.

In addition to requesting extra pickups from the corner wastebaskets, Greenfield expressed interest in piloting a program that would put cameras on key street corners to catch those who are disposing of their residential garbage in public trash cans, adding to the overflow.

Greenfield said his office receives dozens of calls each month from members of the community complaining about the excess trash.

As for DOS response to the request for additional trash cans, Dawkins said only that she had been unable to track down a formal request from Greenfield with respect to increasing the number of basket pickups in the area.

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