UPDATE: Beginning on June 23, 2014 throughout New Bedford, ABC Disposal will collect solid waste and recycling in wheeled carts. The carts will be emptied by automated trucks with mechanized arms and fueled by compressed natural gas (CNG). The program is designed to increase citywide recycling, reduce litter and decrease the amount of solid waste sent to the Crapo Hill landfill.
At a press conference earlier today, Mayor Jon Mitchell joined by members of the City’s negotiating team, announced the City had reached an agreement to enter into a new long-term contract with ABC Disposal Service for New Bedford’s solid waste collection and recycling services.
ABC Disposal, a large regional provider of collection services and a New Bedford-based family-owned company, will continue to provide curbside collection and disposal of solid waste services to residents and businesses for the new contract period beginning on October 1, 2013 and ending on June 30, 2023.
Mayor Mitchell praised the City team for their work, “This was a major undertaking for the City of New Bedford. I asked our team to be tough but fair, and come back with a deal that put the needs of residents and the interests of taxpayers first.” The Mayor added, “ABC Disposal, Mike Camara, and the Camara family, for their part, were very reasonable and accommodating in meeting the City’s demands, and I very much appreciate their partnership. We all have an agreement of which we can be proud.”
Under the new contract, neighborhood residents can expect the same collection schedule and the same quality and dependable approach to recycling and trash collection provided by ABC Disposal for the past several years. The contract contains several service upgrades that will lead to an improved user experience, cleaner city streets, increased recycling, other environmental benefits, and a reduction in the cost to taxpayers of sending waste to the Crapo Hill landfill.
The trash collection schedule in residential areas will remain unchanged. However, as of July 1, 2014, the City and ABC will switch to an automated collection system citywide. With automated collection, a robotic arm swings out from the collection truck, lifts a specialized container, and dumps trash and recycling into the compactor bin. The system requires uniform carts with wheels that are specially designed to work with the truck and robotic arm.
City officials said the many benefits of the new system for the City of New Bedford made the decision to implement it a simple one. The wheeled carts are easy to maneuver and come with closed lids designed to keep trash in and off the streets. Residents will be provided with a similar convenient wheeled cart for recyclables. The new system will allow for “single stream recycling” or, all recyclable materials (cardboard, paper, plastic) may be deposited into one convenient container. With the anticipated doubling of the City’s recycling rate, trash tonnage collected is expected to decrease significantly and estimates indicate the City could realize over $100,000 in landfill savings annually.
Prior to implementation of the automated system, ABC will distribute wheeled solid waste and recycling carts to properties in New Bedford with fewer than four units at no charge to the property owner. Single family homes will receive one 65-gallon wheeled cart for recycling and one for solid waste. Two family homes will receive one 95-gallon wheeled cart for recycling and one for solid waste. Three family homes will receive two 95-gallon wheeled carts for recycling and two for solid waste. Buildings with more than four units, that do not use their own private trash services, will also be provided with solid waste and recycling carts and will be charged a fee for the use of those carts. Businesses will have the opportunity to pay a one-time fee for the use of one cart for solid waste provided that they also obtain a recycling cart of the same size for which a fee will be charged. One time cart fees will be for the life of the cart.
ABC will provide the service in New Bedford using alternative fuel vehicles that run on compressed natural gas, a fuel source that burns cleaner than diesel, producing 22% fewer emissions, and 90% less particulates.
The Downtown Business District can expect more immediate improvements, including the following changes to its trash and recycling collection beginning on October 1, 2013.
- Downtown trash will be collected 8-10 am Monday through Friday. (Presently downtown trash is collected in the evenings.)
- Cardboard collection in the downtown will be conducted 8-10 am on Mondays. (Presently cardboard is collected on Mondays in the afternoon.)
- Downtown curbside recycling (blue bins) will be collected on Thursdays from 8-10 am. (Presently the blue bins are collected on Thursdays after 9am.)
- City paper route’s (included City buildings and schools) collection days will change for some customers.
- The City and ABC will conduct extensive outreach to the downtown businesses and others regarding the changes to the collection schedule, including literature distribution and Cable Access programming.
The City of New Bedford will conduct outreach to the downtown businesses and others regarding the changes to the collection schedule that will affect them.