Albemarle County is in the nascent stages of establishing its own public works department and one of the first moves has been the purchase of a large vehicle intended to clean streets in the urban area.
“Investments in an urban right of way program – including launching a local streetsweeper program – and property maintenance will increase our management of our public spaces and the safety of our built environment,” wrote County Executive Jeffrey Richardson in the executive summary for the budget for FY2023. (page 7)
The capital budget for that year includes $385,000 to purchase the streetsweeper and $50,183 to hire a full-time operator. The vehicle is set to arrive in August 2023 and Albemarle is conducting a poll through Monday for the public to choose a name between nine choices. You can visit the poll here.
The finalists are:
- Lightning McClean
- Bruce Streetclean
- Lil Bo Sweep
- Sergeant Sweeper
- Beeper the Sweeper
- Sweeping Beauty
- Dirt Vader
- Emily Broomtë
During a two month rental of a streetsweeper, Albemarle picked up over 100 tons of trash and debris. The Engage Albemarle website extols the environmental benefits of streetsweeping:
- Street sweeping helps preserve our roadways by removing wearing debris and extending the life of paved roads and paths.
- Street sweeping helps protect wildlife by eliminating the number of plastics and litter that end up on the sides of roads.
- Street sweeping helps to remove harmful metals and pollutants that can enter our air emissions. By reducing the amount of road debris, street sweeping helps preserve our local waterways and air.
Before you go: The time to write and research of this article is covered by paid subscribers to Charlottesville Community Engagement. In fact, this particular installment comes from the August 4, 2023 edition of the program. To ensure this research can be sustained, please consider becoming a paid subscriber or contributing monthly through Patreon.