New York City Mayor Eric Adams, the New York City Department of Sanitation (DSNY), and the Sanitation Foundation (DSNY’s official nonprofit) announced a major new philanthropic undertaking focused on cleaning high-traffic commercial corridors across the city in a video released today. Beginning on Nostrand Avenue, from Myrtle Avenue to Eastern Parkway, and Utica Avenue, from Fulton Street to East New York Avenue, in Brooklyn, this new initiative — dubbed the “Clean City Alliance” — will provide sidewalk cleaning to some of the busiest areas that do not have Business Improvement Districts (BID) to help organize cleanliness efforts in all five boroughs. Property owners are legally responsible for the cleanliness of the sidewalk in front of their property, as well as 18 inches into the street. In many neighborhoods, businesses pay to form BIDs, which then contract with outside groups for sidewalk cleaning, making a noticeable difference in sidewalk cleanliness and pedestrian experience. The “Clean City Alliance” will bring philanthropy and the private sector together and will begin by servicing sidewalks in parts of Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy — a neighborhood that does not have a BID — and will expand to other busy commercial corridors without BIDs across the city. The “Clean City Alliance” will also be a source of employment opportunity, hiring locally across the city.
“Every part of our city deserves to be clean — every street and every neighborhood,” said Mayor Adams. “With the ‘Clean City Alliance,’ we are building on our ‘Get Stuff Clean’ initiatives, partnering with philanthropic and business partners to improve New Yorkers’ quality of life, and helping businesses thrive. Thank you to the leaders from across New York who are stepping up, donating to this program, and doing their part to make a clean city a reality for all across the five boroughs.”
“There are so many important reasons the busy commercial corridors of Crown Heights should have the same level of investment by the business community as Midtown Manhattan,” said Chief Advisor to the Mayor Chaplain Ingrid Lewis-Martin. “This is the beginning of a paradigm shift to level the playing field. It starts here it, starts now, and will spread to other disenfranchised neighborhoods. This initiative is good for residents and good for business.”
“Thanks to the combined work of the Sanitation Foundation and DSNY, today we are recognizing and meeting the needs of neighborhoods citywide that have not historically received the daily maintenance and cleaning benefits of a formal business improvement district,” said Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi. “New Yorkers everywhere deserve clean, livable streets and sidewalks, and today’s announcement is another significant step towards that goal.”
“Over the last year and a half, Mayor Adams has invested in clean streets, and now with the ‘Clean City Alliance,’ we can engage our philanthropic community in taking that work to the next level,” said DSNY Commissioner Jessica Tisch. “Along with the way we’ve revolutionized trash collection, this will make a deep and meaningful difference in the pedestrian experience of the city.”
“The difference in the cleanliness of our streets is apparent — all you have to do is look around — but there is always more to do. The ‘Clean City Alliance’ is not absolving businesses of their legal and moral responsibility; instead, it’s about showing them the positive outcomes that come from doing what’s right,” said Caryl Englander, chair of the board, Sanitation Foundation. “New York City belongs to all of us. This shared ownership comes with a shared responsibility to keep our city clean and beautiful.”
Purposefully designed to be a replicable model, the “Clean City Alliance” will provide sidewalk cleaning and litter removal services to a given neighborhood for a set period of time, during which the Sanitation Foundation and DSNY will work closely with local stakeholders to ensure the neighborhood continues to remain clean.
The launch of the “Clean City Alliance” comes as part of a massive overhaul of cleanliness in New York City, including:
- The return of full street sweeping and Alternate Side Parking;
- The highest level of litter basket service in history;
- Streamlining responsibilities in an effort to ensure long-ignored areas — like medians, step streets, and greenways — are cleaned;
- A universal curbside composting program — being rolled out over the next year and a half — which will remove rat food from trash bags;
- The city’s first anti-littering marketing campaign in 15 years; and
- New enforcement against the scourge of illegal dumping, including $4,000 summonses and vehicle impounds.
New Yorkers who wish to support the work of the “Clean City Alliance” can contribute on the Sanitation Foundation’s website.
“There’s so much potential in New York neighborhoods. Keeping them clean is certainly a good step towards that,” said Ayo Balogun, owner of the restaurant Department of Culture on Nostrand Avenue within the “Clean City Alliance” service area. “I am really thankful that this kind of initiative will help not only my restaurant, but the whole neighborhood and the city.”
“I applaud the ‘Clean City Alliance’ as an innovative initiative that will boost businesses’ bottom lines and residents’ quality of life by keeping our highly trafficked commercial streets clean,” said New York State Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn. “Communities that lack business improvement districts still deserve beautification and clean streets, and I thank Mayor Eric Adams, DSNY, and the Sanitation Foundation for this great philanthropic initiative. As a representative for portions of Nostrand Avenue, I know our community will benefit immensely from this initiative, as will the rest of New York City as the ‘Clean City Alliance’ expands.”
“Nostrand Avenue is at the heart of the Caribbean community in Central Brooklyn and a thriving business corridor. The North Nostrand Avenue Merchant Association and other business associations maintain this entrepreneurial hub, but it still takes significant resources to keep our commercial corridors flourishing,” said New York State Assemblymember Brian A. Cunningham. “That’s why I am proud Mayor Eric Adams, Commissioner Tisch, and the Sanitation Foundation created the ‘Clean City Alliance’ initiative to maintain sidewalks in high-traffic commercial corridors to ensure our small, local, often minority and women businesses, thrive.”
“I applaud DSNY and the Sanitation Foundation’s ‘Clean City Alliance,’ charged with improving public spaces and quality of life in commercial corridors across our city,” said New York State Senator Roxanne J. Persaud. “Better maintained commercial areas will continue to draw the customers that small businesses rely upon.”
“The ‘Clean City Alliance’ is an innovative partnership between city government and the private sector to keep our sidewalks clean,” said New York State Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar. “This philanthropic initiative will lift a huge burden off the shoulders of working-class and small business owners, who often cannot afford to participate in BIDs shown to keep busy commercial corridors clean. In fact, 98 percent of the city lacks the benefit of BIDs. The ‘Clean City Alliance’ will step in to fill the gap and free us from the vermin and health hazards that litter precipitates. I applaud Mayor Adams and the New York City Department of Sanitation for taking clean streets to the next level with this initiative.”
“While business improvement districts have a history of successfully partnering with city agencies to ensure local commercial corridors thrive and flourish, high-traffic shopping areas outside these districts have struggled to attain the same level of attention to safeguard the health and safety of their establishments and clients,” said Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson. “That is why I fully support the mayor’s ‘Clean City Alliance’ that will bring the Department of Sanitation and the Sanitation Foundation together to provide the workforce necessary to remove litter and debris surrounding these stores. I want to thank Mayor Adams and Commissioner Tisch for joining our businesses in the fight for the health and safety of our communities.”
“The ‘Clean City Alliance’ initiative is a welcome addition to our city, as we promote cleanliness and an elevated quality of life for those who enjoy our business corridors and live nearby,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. “I look forward to working alongside our partners at DSNY and the Mayor’s Office in order to bring this program to Queens in the near future.”
“New Yorkers deserve to have safe, clean streets,” said New York City Councilmember Joann Ariola. “This new ‘Clean City Alliance’ will bring us that much closer to bringing clean streets and sidewalks to everyone in the five boroughs and will hopefully spread throughout the city to ensure a high quality of life for everyone.”
“I want to thank New York City Mayor Eric Adams and the Department of Sanitation’s Sanitation Foundation for launching this new initiative that will help business owners, particularly small business owners, with maintaining our streets clean,” said New York City Councilmember Marjorie Velázquez. “This initiative will not only go a long way in helping business owners keep our streets safe from disease-spreading vermin but will also allow them to take advantage of potential increased foot-traffic revenue from pedestrians enjoying our clean sidewalks.”
June 30, 2023
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