Street Sweeping And Debris Sorting
Clean streets beautify neighborhoods but are only part of the reason why street sweeping is a valued service in the City of Tampa. Protecting water resources is another important reason to maintain clean streets. Rainwater flows from rooftops, yards and streets to storm drains, and to our creeks, canals, and rivers to Tampa Bay. Street sweeping captures litter, sediment, and fallen leaves before it enters the storm drains protecting our waterways from these pollutants.
Street sweeping services are delivered by the Stormwater Department on a regularly scheduled basis for residential and business areas. The Department also sweeps before and after special events, including parades and marathons. You can now access street sweeping routes online to determine when sweeping will occur in your area. Not all streets within a route receive street sweeping. Only streets that have curb and gutters are scheduled for sweeping services.
Residential Street Sweeping
This sweeping program covers approximately 1800 curbed miles utilizing four Mechanical Sweepers. Residential curbed streets are swept on a continuous schedule year round. The continuous loop, consisting of 32 routes, is repeated every 40 - 45 days, beginning with Route #01 in South Tampa and completing the cycle with Route #32 in New Tampa. Sweeping for the residential street program occurs between 5:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.
Business Districts / Commercial Sweeping
This program covers major streets in the urban area including the Channel side District, Ybor City, Kennedy Blvd, Bayshore Boulevard, and Downtown. Because these streets, which total 140 curbed miles, are major transportation routes they are swept every week. Sweeping occurs between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:30 am. The program uses one Vacuum Sweeper.
Another Vacuum Sweeper is dedicated to one way streets and streets with island medians. Due to their heavy use and unique traffic patterns, these types of streets receive bi-weekly service between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:30 a.m.
State of the Art Equipment
All the sweepers used by the City are leased under a program that has saved the City several thousand dollars. The lease agreement provides maximum equipment availability, ensuring a full fleet at all times. Previously, when City owned equipment failed and was scheduled for maintenance, sweeping route coverage was scaled back until the faulty equipment was returned. Now, under the new agreement, if the equipment requires maintenance for any reason, the leasing company provides same day or next day service, and in the unlikely event that a timely service cannot be offered, the company provides substitute equipment until the leased sweeper can be put back in service.
Disposal of Street Sweeping Debris
Litter, vegetation, and sediments get collected in sweepers and require proper disposal. Approximately 80% of the material collected into street sweepers looks like dirt, but actually consists of decomposed vegetative matter, and sand, silt and clay that binds with oil, hydrocarbons, and trace metals from brake linings. The "dirt" must be separated from trash and vegetation prior to final disposition. The Stormwater Department operates a facility to provide this sorting function. Shaker screens are used to separate the dirt portion, which is then used as landfill cover. The larger trash and vegetation are sent to the City's waste to energy facility to produce electricity. The City's street sweeping program removes over 13,000,000 pounds of debris, and cumulatively sweeps over 25,000 miles of curbed street per calendar year.
Help Keep Tampa Clean
You can help improve street sweeping efficiencies by checking the City website, Sweeping Routes , for upcoming sweeping in your area. It is helpful if vehicles are not parked on the street, because it prevents the sweepers from reaching the curbed lane where debris accumulates. Also, please do not pile yard waste or trash containers on the street next to the curb, rather put them at the edge of your property so the sweeper does not have to go around them. Even the smallest efforts on your part can go a long way towards Keeping Tampa Clean!
Making the City look better and keeping the river and bay healthy is everyone's responsibility. You can do your part by disposing of trash properly and making sure there's no loose material in your pickup truck bed.