Parks and green spaces in Erlangen: garbage remains a problem – Erlangen

– Overflowing garbage cans, washing machines or furniture thrown away: a sight that is no longer rare in the parks or waste disposal centers of the city and that has increased even more since the days of the Crown. Despite adjustments to emptying, the Stadtgrün, waste management and street cleaning operations can hardly keep up. There remains the appeal to those who cause the garbage.

Schlossgarten, Bohlenplatz, Schwabachanlage or the green corridor in the Röthelheimpark are among the green oases of Erlangen and consequently attract many people who enjoy their lunch break, an evening with friends or a coffee to go there. And leave the garbage behind. Baskets along the walkways and near the benches overflow regularly. Pizza boxes, beer bottles and paper bags are often scattered around the bin because there is no more space inside it. The problem is not new, but a lasting one.

Too much packaging waste

And one that has increased since the start of the pandemic: Although the total amount in garbage cans has decreased – because there was hardly anyone in the city – it has increased dramatically in green spaces, as Heike Atzenbeck of the urban green company says, waste management and cleaning of dirt roads. Sales and packaging waste are particularly problematic: “This doesn’t make a big difference in terms of weight, but especially in terms of volume – the amount of optical waste has definitely increased. For example, the ban on plastics.” The city green department, which deals, among other things, with the emptying of waste bins, has therefore again this year he preferred the “summer mode”. and from mid-April, instead of starting in May, empty the trash cans in the city on Saturdays and Sundays.

More junk due to “to go” offers: Visitors to the palace garden have seen images like this again and again over the past few weekends.
© Klaus Dieter Schreiter

Regulated emptying rhythm

However, overflowing garbage cans can be observed regularly in Erlangen and especially around the green spaces and popular leisure facilities. Our editorial team continues to receive emails and calls from readers annoyed by the mountains of garbage. Christoph Kintopp, head of the City Green Department, obviously knows the problem and explains that the emptying is adapted to the frequency of use of the respective area: “We do not empty all the garbage cans every day, but we have graduated: In the city center it is almost emptied. every day, there is an attendant who goes around just to empty the garbage cans and collect the green spaces and all the other green spaces that are not in the immediate context of the city center are cleaned every two days. castle, a person empties early in the morning until noon at the latest and then back there the garbage cans. ” It is just one of the many tasks facing the city green department team, and here it is not possible to empty it several times a day.

appeal to reason

“At the intersection you can already see that the intervals work so far that you still have a green area cleared in the morning,” says Kintopp. “But around 3 pm, when there was the first wave of entertainment, it may be that by 5 pm the first garbage cans are already full or have been placed with a pizza box and the garbage is next to it.” It doesn’t work without an appeal to those who fill up the waste bins: “We can all have fun if the things we carry with us are handled a little more sensibly.”

The information campaign should help

An information campaign will soon draw attention to this: DINA3 aluminum Dibond signs and smaller ones for garbage cans will encourage people to take their waste home or dispose of it properly. “Then you should like it less with the index finger raised, but in a relaxed way, to take with you what you have filled with you when it is empty or to dispose of it properly”.

Disposal of wild bulky waste

But it’s not just the rubbish in litter bins in green areas and recreational facilities that has increased. Bulky bulk waste is another problem: “In recent years we have seen an increasing trend of bulk storage in public recycling container locations in the city area. In 2020, storage has even increased again”, says Heike Atzenbeck. “This is especially annoying when items are being deposited for which there are actually free storage options,” says Atzenbeck.

Although there are in the vast majority of cases, the street cleaning or bulky waste group comes across such illegal dumps at least once a week and has to dispose of larger furniture or electronic waste, such as washing machines. On average, once a month, those responsible encounter really large sales. Recyclable waste container sites, where 90% of wild dumping occurs, are therefore approached more frequently. Around 200 tons of such deposits accumulated in 2020, compared to 160 tons in 2019: “2020 has been a bumper year so far: we expect a slight decrease in volume for 2021,” says Atzenbeck.

Trash investigators are not expected in Erlangen

Trash investigators are already on duty in other cities, but this is not the case in Erlangen and it hasn’t been discussed so far, Atzenbeck says. “Of course we also do our best: most of them are cleaned by street sweepers and if they find addresses, for example, they try to start fines, but there is no targeted prosecution”. Video surveillance is not allowed and therefore there is no way to curb this trend – it is also questionable whether it would be particularly promising.

“We can only lose there,” says Atzenbeck. “If we leave it too long, the pile will only go up, let’s put it away immediately, people see – oh, it works.” The measures that are taken if the littering of individual places gets out of hand are, for example, relocating or reducing the size of the waste disposal area, for example by closing it: “I hope that, as people have less space to store things, the whole thing will go down, “Atzenbeck says. “I don’t really want to dissolve a place.”

An image that is often observed in the garden of the Erlangen palace: instead of being thrown into the bin, pizza boxes and plastic take-away cups end up next to it because the waste bins overflow.

An image that is often observed in the garden of the Erlangen palace: instead of being thrown into the bin, pizza boxes and plastic take-away cups end up next to it because the waste bins overflow.
© Ragnhild Rummel

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