Baltimore City Sustainability Commission Recommends “Smart Cans” & Developer Trash Plans To Combat Litter

An April 21 Baltimore Brew article reported that Baltimore City’s Sustainability Commission has developed a series of recommendations to address the City’s challenging litter and trash problem. The recommendations include:

  1. Increasing the number of “smart cans” given to residents;
  2. Increasing the number of “corner cans” on public streets;
  3. Require developers to create a trash plan for building sites that must be submitted for approval to the City’s planning department;
  4. Creating a “Clean Up Baltimore” Peer-to-Peer Network;
  5. Launching a new anti-littering media campaign on social media, buses, and trash cans;
  6. Supporting statewide legislation to create a bottle deposit program; and
  7. Developing a stronger litter, trash and dumping code enforcement process for the City.

From the article:

Currently operating in two Inner City neighborhoods, the [smart can] program gives residents a sturdy city-owned trash can, equipped with an attached lid and wheels to make it easy to move. The purpose of the cans is to reduce garbage and rat problems in communities where residents don’t use trash cans or can lids or don’t use them efficiently.

The new cans are equipped with a chip that the city can use to determine where the can belongs. Taking a can from a property is considered theft and may be subject to law enforcement action. …

Corner cans are somewhat controversial in Baltimore because the traditional municipal wide-mouthed trash receptacles are subject to misuse by those who stuff them with bags of household garbage.

Better designed narrow-rimed cans are less prone to abuse, and more efficient, but are also more expensive to purchase. …

Another proposal the commission supports is requiring developers to provide a trash plan for approval at site review meetings with the city Planning Department.