No ifs or butts in cleanup

2015-05-19 06:00

The Cape Town CBD is the cleanest “downtown” in South Africa, according to participants in annual surveys by the Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID).

But it takes a great deal of uncompromising effort, including manpower and numerous partnerships to achieve this, says CCID chief operations officer Tasso Evangelinos.

“Alongside the City of Cape Town’s own waste management team who take care of the municipal and green bins across the CBD. The CCID’s five-person, full-time urban management team has an additional complement of literally hundreds of people who work day and night to sweep the pavements and help to maintain our roads and curbsides.”

Ernest Sonnenberg, mayoral committee member for utility services, agrees that these partnerships are vital: “The City applauds the efforts of the CCID team and is grateful for its assistance in keeping the central city clean. Its work helps to create a space that residents can be proud of, and one that they are inclined to take better care of. This operation is a fine example of what can be achieved when different spheres of society work to make progress possible, together.”

The CCID’s other partners in keeping the CBD clean include 60 professional cleaners across 16 out of every 24-hour cycle. In addition, a 300-strong semi-skilled cleaning and maintenance team works through the CCID’s NGO partner Straatwerk.

Over the last recorded year the CCID cleaned 10 739 municipal drains, from which 5466kg of debris was removed, collected 4775kg of garden waste and removed 344 tons of waste to landfill.

Members of the Straatwerk team collect on average 142kg of butts each month – or close to 1 800kg per year.

“To help combat this,” says Evangelinos, “each year in May the CCID distributes 35 000 pocket-sized, portable cigarette pouches. We’ll be doing a massive distribution of these pouches at major intersections and high-traffic public areas throughout the CBD.”

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