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April 17, 2019

Philly launches mechanical street cleaning pilot in six neighborhoods

City Services Streets
 West philly Rowhomes Rowhouses  Thom Carroll /PhillyVoice

Rowhomes in West Philadelphia.

A new pilot program in six Philadelphia neighborhoods will bring mechanical street sweeping to residential areas in the coming weeks and months. 

The program, part of a $2.3 million annual investment in street cleaning, seeks to reduce litter and cut down on waste entering landfills or conventional incinerators. 

“Watching our city get dumped on day after day seriously burns me up,” Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement. “It is the reason why I have fought to bring back a residential mechanical sweeping program. Being able to restore this program in the neighborhoods that need it most is something I am very proud of, and I thank the Streets Department for their work on putting this pilot together.”

The pilot will be introduced in the following neighborhoods: 

• West Philadelphia – Parkside Ave. to Lancaster Ave., from 52nd St. to Girard Ave.
Southwest – Woodland Ave. to Kingsessing Ave., from 49th St. to Cemetery Ave.
• Kensington – 2nd St. to Frankford Ave., from Tioga St. to Lehigh Ave.
• Strawberry Mansion – Sedgley St. to Lehigh Ave., from 29th St. to 33rd St.
• Logan – Godfrey Ave. to Roosevelt Blvd., from Broad. St to 5th St.
• South Philadelphia – McKean St. to Oregon Ave., from 4th St. to 8th St.

Streets Commissioner Carlton Williams explained that the street sweeping pilot will be more comprehensive than standard mechanical sweeping. 

“Along with mechanical broom cleaning there will be sidewalk removal of litter and debris through back pack blowers and hand brooms. There will also be compactors used to remove illegally dumped materials,” Williams said. “Residents are not mandated to move their vehicles but we strongly encourage it so our broom cleaning can be most impactful removing litter from the curb lines." 

Throughout the pilot, city workers will patrol the neighborhoods to ensure sanitation codes are followed and measure the effectiveness of the new program.