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Over 4,000 Tons of Trash Removed Citywide Through ‘Clean SD’ Initiative

Proactive Crew Cleans Up Illegal Dumping Spot Ahead of Mayor Faulconer’s Planned Announcement

Clean SD Before and After

Thursday, September 5, 2019 - NEWS RELEASE

San Diego – Following the round-the-clock expansion of the popular ‘Clean SD’ program in this year’s budget, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer today announced that cleanup crews have removed over 4,000 tons of trash and debris from neighborhoods across the city since 2017.

Ironically, Mayor Faulconer planned to make the announcement at an illegal dumping spot in Lincoln Park where trash had been piling up, but when he arrived there was nothing there.

At approximately 7:30 a.m., a City code compliance officer examined the site and cordoned off the debris-ridden area prior to the Mayor’s arrival at 10:30 a.m. In that short window of time, a roving cleanup crew saw the mess and took the initiative to clean it up based on the proactive approach they’re trained to use.

“This is exactly the model that we want our crews to follow: see it, clean it up.” Mayor Faulconer said. “They are out there 24/7 hitting these hotspots across the city and are instructed to stop and clean up other areas that they see along the way. This is all about restoring a sense of pride in our communities and making sure our neighborhoods are clean and safe for everyone.”

To date, crews have cleared more than 4,000 tons of trash – the equivalent of 61,000 regular household bins – from sidewalks, parks, alleys, canyons and along the San Diego River.

This year’s budget marks the third fiscal cycle that significantly expanded the program’s funding to more than $10 million – nearly quadrupling the investment in annual cleanup efforts since Fiscal Year 2017. The latest expansion went into effect July 1 with the hiring of second- and third-shift crews, enacting litter removal on a 24/7 basis and working to manage weeds and brush growth in medians and areas across the city.

Initially launched in May 2017, the “Clean SD” program is an aggressive cleanup effort to keep our neighborhoods, public spaces, canyons and riverbeds free and clear of trash and debris. City and Urban Corps crews respond to complaints received through the City’s Get It Done application, and have removed litter from “hotspots” and neighborhoods with a historically high level of illegal dumping activity.

In partnership with the San Diego River Park Foundation, the City has also targeted cleanup efforts along the San Diego River – reducing the number of homeless encampments by 90 percent. The City only owns about one-third of the property along the river with the other two-thirds being privately-held by several businesses and other government agencies.

Since its inception, crews have already removed over 4,000 tons of debris, including:

  • 7,500 mattresses and box springs
  • 2,140 shopping carts
  • 985 tires
  • 590 appliances

Other “Clean SD” efforts include:

  • Increased street sweeping in the East Village neighborhood
  • Sanitizing sidewalks in downtown and other neighborhoods
  • Prioritizing graffiti removal requests

Learn more about the “Clean SD” program.

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