More lit­ter bins may be an­swer

Auckland City Harbour News - - FRONT PAGE - By JESS LEE

A LIT­TER-strewn stretch of road irk­ing in­ner-city res­i­dents is clean­ing up its act.

Union St had be­come a dump­ing ground for lit­ter­bugs but has un­der­gone a ma­jor cleanup af­ter the Auck­land City Har­bour News brought it to the at­ten­tion of the New Zealand Trans­port Agency.

Free­mans Bay res­i­dent Carolyn Walker is fed up with the area be­ing a dump site for lit­ter and is de­lighted to see the street cleaned up.

She walks along the street reg­u­larly on her way home from work.

‘‘It’s mas­sive lit­ter­ing – you don’t re­ally find piles and piles of rub­bish like that any­where else.

‘‘Par­tic­u­larly in sur­round­ing ar­eas like Free­mans Bay.

‘‘It’s pretty re­volt­ing hon­est.’’

The street could be found lit­tered with old pil­low­cases, take­away wrap­pers, plas­tic, cans and al­co­hol bot­tles, she says.

Walker is dis­mayed by the lack of rub­bish bins along the street.

Auck­land Coun­cil has re­spon­si­bil­ity for lit­ter within the road cor­ri­dor in Union St but the area be­hind the fence run­ning along the edge of the foot­path is

to

be ad­min­is­tered by the NZTA.

Auck­land Coun­cil solid waste manager Ian Stup­ple says it will carry out lit­ter au­dits in this area to de­ter­mine the level of traf­fic and ap­pro­pri­ate so­lu­tions to the prob­lem.

This may in­clude in­stalling lit­ter bins or in­creas­ing the fre­quency of lit­ter pa­trols, he says.

NZTA’s Auck­land and North­land high­way manager Brett Glid­don says the area be­hind the fence has not had regular lit­ter re­moval in the past.

‘‘Given the re­cent in­ci­dent, the Auck­land Mo­tor­way Al­liance will be work­ing col­lab­o­ra­tively with the Auck­land Coun­cil to de­velop a rub­bish re­moval pro­gramme for the area,’’ he says.

‘‘This will in­volve vis­it­ing the site once or twice a week to com­plete main­te­nance du­ties and re­move lit­ter.’’

Auck­land CBD Res­i­dents Ad­vi­sory Group chair­man Tim Cof­fey says he would like to see more lit­ter bins in­stalled around prob­lem ar­eas in the cen­tral city.

‘‘Par­tic­u­larly some­where Union St.

‘‘It is get­ting more foot-traf­fic be­cause more peo­ple live there but

like it’s a bit off the beaten path as far as it’s not Queen St,’’ he says.

‘‘That area will be­come more in­ten­si­fied – all the more rea­son to have more lit­ter bins.’’

But Cof­fey says much of the prob­lem lies with peo­ple not tak­ing pride in ur­ban en­vi­ron­ments.

‘‘Some peo­ple seem to think it’s their god-given right just to drop lit­ter on the street, even if there is a lit­ter bin 30 feet away, be­lieve me I’ve watched it,’’ he says.

‘‘You can give a park­ing ticket be­cause you haven’t got a ve­hi­cle reg­is­tra­tion but it’s hard to give a lit­ter in­fringe­ment to a per­son.’’

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