Efficient strategies for waste collection
New York City’s waste collection system is a fundamental component of the city’s infrastructure, yet many take its complex underlying structure for granted. While waste from residents, public agencies, and institutional entities are collected by Department of Sanitation (DSNY), the collection of waste from all commercial users, from bodegas to office towers, is collected by private carting companies licensed by the Business Integrity Commission (BIC).
While the current system is highly competitive, with hundreds of private carters free to negotiate directly with customers, there have been questions raised about how the system operates. Concerns regarding the current system cut across many areas, including efficiency, environmental impacts, labor practices, and safety standards.
BuroHappold Engineering led a Private Carting Study for the Department of Sanitation and Business Integrity Commission that evaluated the current state of the private carting industry from both a market and safety perspective, and provided a traffic and air quality impact analysis associated with the current system.
As the City contemplated a shift to a zone-based commercial waste collection system, the study analyzed the potential impacts on cost, employment, safety, traffic, and air quality of a zone-based system.
Sabina Uffer, Associate
As the study was highly anticipated by environmental justice groups and critically viewed by the carting industry, BuroHappold’s data-driven approach to understand the current market as well as the potential impacts of a future system change brought a neutral view to the discussion. It ultimately helped inform the decision-making process by characterizing the industry and identifying whether shifting to the proposed system would help the City meet its broader mobility, environmental, and economic objectives.
Services and approach
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