The City's street cleaning program removes dirt and debris from City streets to provide a healthy, safe, and attractive environment for the citizens of Portland. Regular removal of leaves and debris is necessary to prevent stormwater drains from clogging, which can result in street flooding. Street cleaning protects water quality and minimizes the burden on the sewer system from surface debris.
The above introduction is on the City of Portland Bureau of Transportation street cleaning web page. I agree that clean streets are a good thing, and that the City should regularly clean them for the benefits listed. The only problem is that the City of Portland street cleaning program doesn't do any of the above.
dump truck at 5 cy would hold about 72 of my bins full of street debris. Or, if we consider both sides of the street, a dump truck would hold about 36 blocks worth of street dirt. The City of Portland has 4,700 miles of paved streets. Using the length of my block, 36 blocks would be 1.7 miles. Do the math, and you get a total of 2,765 dump truck loads.
2,765. That is the number of dump trucks full of street dirt that the City street cleaning program leaves behind every time they clean the streets, based on the assumptions of my small exercise and calculations.
But wait - what about posting "no parking" signs so that the streets can be properly cleaned? In many cities, street sweeping is scheduled for specific days and people know not to park on those streets. Can't we do that in Portland? Apparently not. The second half of the City web site cited above lists numerous reasons (excuses) why the City of Portland can't do that. And of course, as the City web site states: "Any attempt to provide a schedule online or through the mail would almost certainly result in a frustrated public because too many factors beyond our control always result in delays to our street sweeping schedule." We certainly don't want a frustrated public!