34th Street

Public Spaces

Reducing Early Trash Put-Outs

Clean sidewalks are good for both businesses and pedestrians.

Throughout the past three years, as part of our continuing effort to keep 34th Street’s sidewalks clean and free of obstacles, 34th Street Partnership reiterated to District constituents NYC Department of Sanitation’s rules for commercial trash collection. One of the main obstacles to keeping our sidewalks clean was the practice by some business owners of placing trash to be collected out on the sidewalk too early.

Garbage left on the sidewalks for too long can cause many problems, including unpleasant odors, needless obstructions for pedestrians, and the increased possibility that trash bags may break open and spill. We have been pleased with the response of most businesses in our neighborhood, and early put-outs have been significantly reduced. However, the problem still lingers. We again ask all owners to follow these rules:

  • Business owners are required to have proof of private carter service and must follow rules on when trash may be placed on sidewalks for collection. All trash must be placed out for collection as close to collection time as possible. If trash is scheduled to be picked up after closing, merchants must place trash outside within one hour of closing. If the collection service is performed during the business day, the trash must be placed out for collection within two hours of collection time. 

  • DSNY rules also state that all cardboard must be flattened and secured with twine or placed in recycling containers or paper recycling bags. You may not use cardboard boxes as receptacles, even for flattened cardboard.   

On our end, the Partnership’s Sanitation team does an excellent job in keeping our neighborhood clean. We thank all businesses that follow DSNY’s rules, and once again ask that everybody join in the effort. As Vinny DeGennaro, our Assistant Chief of Sanitation puts it, “early put-outs are bad for individual businesses, and bad for other businesses on the block. Shoppers don't like to shop in an area that is dirty and unsightly, and it’s not a good way to promote tourism. The bottom line, though, is that it’s against the law.” 

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