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What's Happening in:  All over South Philly 

Mayor Kenney is on board for city-wide street cleaning if you are

At the beginning of the year, Councilman Squilla spoke out about bringing a street-cleaning program back to the city, even though his “South Philly brethren will probably freak out about it.”

 Litter at 12th and McKean

Litter at 12th and McKean

In a recent article from NBC News, Mayor Kenney shared his thoughts on the program. If Philadelphians are willing to move their cars for street cleaning, he’s on board.

What the Streets Department shared with NBC News:

The lack of any major cleaning services in the rest of the city is largely a persistent aftereffect of budget cuts in 2009 amid the recession, said Donald Carlton, deputy commissioner of the Streets Department. He estimated that the cost to bring back a city-wide program would cost $18 million in one-time capital outlays and $3.25 million per year thereafter.

Now here’s what our Mayor has to say:

Jim Kenney, Philadelphia’s mayor-elect who took office on January 1, has decided to directly ask neighborhoods whether they want their streets cleaned and if they’re willing to move their cars.

“I’m not forcing people to have a clean street,” he said. “We should clean the city at least twice a year with a massive clean-up, which we’re planning. But in the meantime, on a bi-monthly or monthly basis, I’m not going to have people screaming and yelling that they don’t want to move their car from one side of the street to the other because it’s such an inconvenience, when they do it in Manhattan twice a week.”

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55 Responses to Mayor Kenney is on board for city-wide street cleaning if you are

  1. Nik March 16, 2016 at 9:06 am #

    South Philly resident and I’m all for it. If you can’t be bothered to move your clunker 1x or 2x a week, what the hell is the point of having a car anyway?

    • Alex March 16, 2016 at 10:11 am #

      I should be allowed to leave my large cadillacs, all of which are registered out of state for insurance purposes, wherever I please for as long as I please.

      • John March 16, 2016 at 11:30 am #

        I chuckled hard at this.

      • Essie March 16, 2016 at 11:37 am #

        This Cadillac person is part of the problem.

  2. Pfloyd March 16, 2016 at 9:08 am #

    No thanks! I sweep my block and have no need of overpriced underfunded street sweeping. It takes me 1/2 hour a week and I do my whole side of the street. If you don’t like the trash clean it up.

  3. Joy March 16, 2016 at 9:21 am #

    YES, YES and YES! South Philly is filthy. I have lived in other cities with street cleaning and it works! I don’t want to hear that it’s the sanitation workers fault and the menus/flyers that are responsible for the pigsty conditions because it’s all about the dirty streets where everything eventually ends up. Big bonus: towing cars that don’t run = MORE PARKING!

    • Tj March 16, 2016 at 1:49 pm #

      An more money got the city from ppa, win win

  4. DL March 16, 2016 at 10:13 am #

    South Philly resident. Yes, Yes, Yes. Please clean these streets once or twice a month. Street cleaning works in every other major city, it’s time we catch up.

    We also need trash cans on every other corner and at every bus stop.

    • lizziehopes March 16, 2016 at 11:12 am #

      Yes! Trash Cans even on residential streets. It would make it much easier for a resident who is walking to their car to just pick up trash and toss it. Right now I can’t even do that because where would I put that beer car stuck by the curb.

    • Missmithril March 17, 2016 at 12:27 am #

      Yes! It’s not just a South Philly issue, and I lived there for four years. People cleaned on my block and we’re awesome about it. But we need support. And now I’m back in West Philly and it’s the same issue—we need trash cans in neighborhoods and a well-defined recycling program throughout the city. Yes!

    • bok March 19, 2016 at 10:51 pm #

      Trash cans – with lids!!!!

  5. c.g. March 16, 2016 at 10:19 am #

    Sorry neighbors, but I’d rather see that $18mm + $3.25mm/yr go to our schools. That money would go a long way towards many things, including buying supplies – supplies which teachers are asking the community to help directly supply.

    • Nik March 16, 2016 at 11:07 am #

      Apples-and-oranges. My understanding is they are funded out of entirely different sources of revenue, so that transfer you illustrate is not practical given how the current budget is set up.

    • spj March 16, 2016 at 11:14 am #

      Unrelated, but the school I live near is a major source of the garbage blowing around on the street. It also seems to function as the dump site for some of the clubs in the area and a fair number of neighbors…

    • mike March 16, 2016 at 1:46 pm #

      Better yet, we should give the money to are troops. They’re the real heroes.

      • TJ March 16, 2016 at 2:05 pm #

        Nice troll, bro

  6. Mara March 16, 2016 at 10:41 am #

    Hands-down yes! A clean environment for children and adults alike is a very good thing for us. As a South Philly resident I approve!

  7. anon March 16, 2016 at 11:14 am #

    Street cleaning is fine, but what good is running a street cleaner when someone will only drop trash within a half hour after it passes? We need to go after the litterers and that will reduce the litter.

  8. Darren March 16, 2016 at 11:28 am #

    YES! I’ve lived in Point Breeze going on 13 years and would be 100% in on this!

  9. Joan March 16, 2016 at 11:30 am #

    Absolutely!!! South Philly needs it, and it has the added bonus of making it a tiny bit less convenient for one house to have 3+ cars that never move. Let’s raise the price for parking permits too. Especially for second or more cars.

  10. Essie March 16, 2016 at 11:33 am #

    If Manhattan can do it, we can do it!

    In addition, cars that don’t belong here can be ticketed and towed away freeing up parking spaces!! YES YES YES!

  11. Tiny Tim March 16, 2016 at 11:39 am #

    The thing I will never understand is people who obsess about the lack of parking but don’t care that their neighbors have 4 cars that they never move.

    • lsb March 17, 2016 at 9:14 pm #

      I care about this! There has been a car parked outside of my house for 3.5 weeks now. I know when they parked but it seems they haven’t been back at all.

      My neighbors car, that doesn’t run, has been parked on the corner for at least 6 months! I would love for both of these cars to get towed. Maybe if there was street cleaning once a month this would happen.

      However, I do find the trash in the Washington Square area to be MUCH more of a mess then South Philly, especially on trash days. Nobody in that area seems to use cans. And all over the city some blocks are just far far worse than others.

  12. Frank the Tank March 16, 2016 at 11:46 am #

    I’d be perfectly happy with one sweep a year in the spring to get the winter crap off the street. The rest of the time the people of each block should be cleaning up their own mess.

    Nothing will change unless people start behaving differently. We immaculately clean the Girard El stop intersection on citywide cleanup day and it’s a complete mess 24hrs later. Every year.

  13. Anthony Traino March 16, 2016 at 11:58 am #

    I’d be shocked if there is a SINGLE person against this that is NOT a car owner. People will say “I’ll clean my own block”, but I’m sure they have a car they don’t want to move. Total joke that Kenney is now saying that street cleaning will happen, only if the residents are ok with it.

    At the end of the day, it’s as much about cleaning streets as it is about regaining control back over the streets at the city level. It takes real leadership to step in and make a decision for the greater good than to support something as long as everyone and their brother is ok for it. But then again, Kenny and these other career jokers are more concerned with their careers and noise than they are with doing what is right.

  14. Zoe March 16, 2016 at 12:07 pm #

    PLEASE yes, bi-monthly street cleaning! In West Philly residents bear a heavy burden of removing wet leaves from the streets in the fall ( and on my block, all year, because they blow down our street from a park that never gets leaves collected by the city). I love our trees, but elderly residents can’t keep up with the mess, and trash collects along with the leaves… moving cars would be a small price to pay.

  15. UserID March 16, 2016 at 12:17 pm #

    YES YES YES! Force the junk cars that never move off the streets. This will add revenue to the city as they will tow and if you want you car back, then pay. Else, it’ll be sold for scrap or auction, whichever is more cost effective It’ll free up additional parking for us to park. It’ll allow street cleaners to clean the streets. It’ll brighten up our neighborhood. It’ll make you smile while walking your dog. the benefits are endless.

  16. Natalie March 16, 2016 at 12:17 pm #

    I completely agree that South Philly NEEDS street cleaning. I also spend a lot of time cleaning my street to only come out a few moments later and see more trash on my sidewalk again and it disgusts me. Center city and surrounding neighborhoods look so much nicer because they are cleaned often, it brings up home values and shows people passing through that we DO care about our neighborhood! There are not enough people that come out and pick up outside their homes and it is hard to keep up with the amount of trash. There is trash on some of these side streets and empty lots that have been there for years.

    I also think trashcans would also be very helpful. Please keep us posted on what we need to do to voice our ideas to MAKE THIS HAPPEN!!!

  17. Joanna March 16, 2016 at 1:40 pm #

    I love between 7th and 8th and Mifflin. Idly is absolutely disgusting. I would do anything to have street cleaning and organize some community clean ups. Also, the trash men are a huge part of the problem. After they come on Thursdays, it appears there’s more trash then there was to begin with!

  18. big margie March 16, 2016 at 1:42 pm #

    honestly, i don’t think the city should pay to clean the streets monthly. maybe a twice a year job is fine, but people really ought to take some pride of ownership or civic pride and clean up their own blocks.. i sweep my steps and the trash around my house and so do my neighbors… sure some call us uppity, but those are the trashy neighbors that leave their cars parked for 6 months while they are in county and come back to complain that someone dented their bumpers. no lie this happens on my block all the time

  19. Bruce March 16, 2016 at 2:20 pm #

    YES! We can get cleaner streets and potentially some broken down cars removed. It’s a win-win.

    • Sami March 16, 2016 at 7:11 pm #


  20. Len March 16, 2016 at 2:35 pm #

    When I lived in the city, we cleaned our own streets and they looked great. People need to stop being slobs, clean up after themselves and stop throwing trash into the streets, Bring your trash home.

    • Sami March 16, 2016 at 7:05 pm #

      Not going to happen, unfortunately. Just not.

    • Tiny Tim March 16, 2016 at 9:47 pm #

      Well you don’t live here anymore, and Philly used to have citywide streetcleaning so it’s nice that you have this false memory.

  21. LizzieHopes March 16, 2016 at 2:52 pm #

    It could also be partially funded by tow and ticket fees.

  22. Steve March 16, 2016 at 2:55 pm #

    100 % on board. South Philly resident here who is out at least once a week cleaning up my street. It would be nice if the city finally chipped in!

  23. Souh Philly resident March 16, 2016 at 3:13 pm #

    Absolutely not! There is a parking problem that would need to be addressed first. Where would you like the cars to go? You can’t park on either side of the street after 5 on any given day. Put the $ towards the schools until you can figure out parking I. South Philly first.

  24. Annonymous March 16, 2016 at 3:33 pm #

    Can he also issue a mandate on how Philadelphia residence should properly throw out their garbage, in bags that can be tied shut. This way trash will not fly throughout the city on trash day. Putting out casual grocery store brown bags of trash, that lay around and cause trash tornados should be fine worthy, at least.

  25. sam March 16, 2016 at 3:49 pm #

    im in south philly and i get street cleaning tickets all the time soooo…. aren’t they already “doing it”?

  26. Michael March 16, 2016 at 3:50 pm #

    As long as it is done between normal business hours, I am all for it.

  27. Gavi March 16, 2016 at 5:52 pm #

    Please do this! Nothing makes the morning walk to work on a Monday harder than dirty streets

  28. Synder ave March 16, 2016 at 6:51 pm #

    Yes! We desperately need the street cleaning program in south Philly neighborhoods.

  29. Sami March 16, 2016 at 7:04 pm #

    YES. South Philadelphia is filthy and I’m sick of it. I own a car and have absolutely on problem moving it if that means cleaner streets. PLEASE.

    • Sami March 16, 2016 at 7:04 pm #

      no problem*

  30. Robert Stein Jr. March 16, 2016 at 8:09 pm #

    People forget in many parts of Philly, streets do not have parking on both sides of the street. If you want the cars removed from these streets to allow a drivable street cleaning vehicle to go down the street then there is no parking on those streets at all. How about a mix of large street cleaner vehicles smaller riding lawn mower sized cleaners and pedestrian street cleaners to manage this littler problem. Additionally public trashcans on every or every other corner would help.

  31. Nicole March 16, 2016 at 9:13 pm #

    Yes. Yes. Yes. It’s embarrassing. And filthy.

  32. Gene/Dolores March 16, 2016 at 11:23 pm #

    Would love to have our street cleaned – had this service years ago and it worked perfectly. Please let this happen – as seniors, it is hard to clean and we would appreciate all the City can do to make our streets clean.

  33. Paula March 17, 2016 at 8:45 am #

    Yes, please clean the
    streets. If the recycling and trash men would sweep up the glass that falls maybe the streets would be cleaner!!!

  34. Tina March 17, 2016 at 10:16 am #

    If everyone cleaned up after themselves and children were taught NOT to throw their trash wherever, perhaps we wouldn’t NEED street cleaning. I have been so tempted on occasion when sitting behind someone at a traffic light to get out of my car and hand them back the McDonalds bag of trash that they just threw out of their car window! Unbelievable that people would do that….

    • Passyunk Easter March 17, 2016 at 11:28 am #

      You and me both! Just the other day I saw a guy at a traffic light throw the lid w/ straw from some fast food drink out his driver’s side window. I almost got out of my vehicle to hand it back to him and say “you dropped something.” But then I wimped out because I was afraid of getting shot. If he’s stupid/lazy enough to litter, then he’s probably dumb enough to be crazy.

  35. ST March 17, 2016 at 11:37 am #

    I am appalled by how many people are against this. Behaviors will not change, people will still litter. And even if those behaviors do change, there will still be restaurant flyers, leaves, dirt, and other miscellaneous debris that will work its way onto our sidewalks and streets. Even if every person on your block pitched in a couple of days a week (and let’s face it, they won’t and/or are physically unable to), it will still not be clean. And there are many blocks that don’t even have residents. If the excuse is that you can’t move your car (once a month!), then why do you even own one? If Manhattan can manage to do this twice a week, Philly should be able to manage once a month. I wish that the mayor would just put his foot down on this once and not ask for opinions.

    Our city needs this badly. I just did a google search for “dirtiest US cities” and the first result was a Forbes article that listed Philadelphia as #3.

  36. David March 17, 2016 at 3:03 pm #

    I’m a South Philly resident and I am 100% in favor of street cleaning. If you don’t want your car to be moved then find a garage and pay for it but I am a believer that even people with litterish behavior will tend to respect more a clean street than a dirty street, plus it’s all a matter of habit, if other cities do it, why not us?
    Please bring Street cleaning back as often as possible and as soon as possible!!

  37. MW March 18, 2016 at 10:47 pm #

    That should not even have to be a question, if anybody wants to live with trash move to a landfill. Clean those streets !!!

  38. eugene March 19, 2016 at 10:26 pm #

    They should do it, but they should do it right. I’ve seen semi-annual cleaning, the sweeper truck looked full and was just dragging wet leaves and spreading them down the block. I also agree with comments for a mix of equipment with some lighter vehicles for smaller streets. And this still leaves the littering, and stacks of circulars that are dropped weekly on curbs, which do not always survive intact until the door-to-door distributors retrieve them to hand them out. And yes in wash sq west, they hand don’t use trash cans, just set out in bags, which are often cut up by trash pickers looking for anything of value.

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