1.6 min readBy Published On: January 2nd, 2015Categories: Features15 Comments on Dirty Southie – let’s clean it up!

Written by Peter Gailunas

I’d never thought I’d say this but I miss street cleaning.  I don’t miss the stress of trying to figure out whether this is the second or third Wednesday of the month or whether or not I’m parked on the right side but I do miss clean streets.  

Have you noticed the condition of Southie’s streets lately?  Trash strewn about in the streets and on the sidewalks.  Clumps of old dead leaves and dirt in clusters in the gutters and blocking catch basins.  It’s disgusting.  We’ve noticed that Citizens Connect on Twitter has been filled with complaints about litter and debris in our neighborhood – clearly people are noticing.  DPW (Department of Public Works) crews came out in full force with mini-street sweepers, leaf blowers and brooms on Friday morning.  So my question is, why don’t we extend the street sweeping program by adding the months of March and December just like the North End and South End? Before you go crazy and say you hate street cleaning and the fear that you’ll forget and your car will get towed – think about it.  Wouldn’t you rather have clean streets than live in filth?  

We went the entire month of December without street cleaning and were left with streets and sidewalks in terrible condition.   By adding the months of December and March it will make the Southie streets cleaner.  While we’re on the subject, pitch in and take pride in our neighborhood.  Sweep the streets in front of your homes and businesses.  If you see trash on the ground, pick it up and throw it away.

What do you think, Southie?  Do you think we should extend our street cleaning program to include March and December?   Take our poll.



  1. Anonymous January 2, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    If residents would sweep and pick up loose trash once a week, say after garbage pick up, the sidewalks & streets would look clean. Probably wouldn't take more than 5 minutes a week.


  2. Anonymous January 2, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    My family sweeps the front of our home (stoop) every few days. I think the condo's are to blame for some this. They pay condo fees to have people maintain their building for such things as shoveling snow, garbage etc. It never seems to get done and if you ask someone who lives in the building about it they say it's not their problem talk to the condo association. Meanwhile the front of their property is filthy and in the winter time it is a sheet of ice and snow creating a hazard for surrounding residents and delivery persons. The next time it snows maybe CIS could put out a gentle reminder to all residents to shovel and salt their sidewalks and stairs.  I feel bad for my poor mail man during the winter. He has to navigate snow mounds and icy sidewalks and stairs all while carrying a heavy bag with his arms full of mail.

  3. Maryann January 2, 2015 at 11:50 pm

    All any of you are doing is complaining about a situation you create. Instead of "walking over" the paper and trash in front of you apartment (sorry condo) take time to bend over and clean it up. When I was a kid in the 60's everyone would sweep up in front of their homes. We did not have street sweeping, we had respect for where we lived. Ah but we were not passing through we stayed and grew up in our neighborhood. My husband who is retired still goes out and sweeps up the trash just as his mother and my mother did in the past. So stop looking for some one to pick up after you, and instead of complaining clean up.


  4. Anonymous January 3, 2015 at 1:18 am
    The people that move in here now do not care because this is not “their” neighborhood. They’ll leave in a year or 2. Or, they are members of a condo association and argue who’s turn it is to sweep. They don’t even shovel nevermind sweep their own sidewalks! They’re used to people doing everything for them so it’s beneath them to do it themselves. I’m not saying all…but most!
  5. Brent January 3, 2015 at 2:03 am
    Agreed. I think if people would use real trash bags and cans there would be less litter. Maybe fine people for not using trash cans,
  6. Anonymous January 3, 2015 at 4:24 am

    Agreed. It doesn't take much to pick up in front of your house.  It's surprising people are willing to pay $500+ for a condo but a can't take a moment to pick up trash in front of their property …and dont get me started on picking the weeds in the summertime.  

  7. Roy Rider January 3, 2015 at 6:43 am

    Wow ~ all that trash in the gutter in front of my house…  "Someone" should do something about that.  Wink Wink…

  8. Missy January 3, 2015 at 2:28 pm

    Yes yes yes. It is disgusting right now. With a smartphone, it's easy to set alerts for this and figure out which Thursday of the month it is.


    The additional benefit is that when people are forced to move their cars, it helps realign parking. Representative Lynch has parked his car and not moved it for weeks, just too far from a handicap spot and taken away a precious parking spot, and he is not the only one.

  9. Dotave January 3, 2015 at 2:40 pm

    Even on streets with year round street sweeping this remains an issue. If they would move to a two a week trash pickup and two a week street sweeping like many other downtown neighborhoods have things could get better 

    Also the streets around Andrew Square have no trash receptacles so people just throw things in the street and shrubs. 

  10. Anonymous January 3, 2015 at 2:47 pm

    Let's start off by not getting the streets and sidewalks dirty in the first place. The newbies need to know that all trash put out needs to be in garbage cans. If trash bags are put out on the sidewalks unprotected, animals and bottle dudes will tear apart the bags. Also the "free" newspapers delivered to your door steps each week, pick them up and throw them in your trash, not the gutters. I'm not "trashing" the yuppies, but they obviously are the biggest offenders.

  11. lu obrien January 4, 2015 at 4:52 am

    on new years night, i walked past the lincoln and i could not believe all the cigarette butts that was on the sidewalk. not only outside the lincoln, but the doorway to the windmill, the cvs before the main enterance of cvs and partially in the doorway of south boston chinese take out. how come these bar/grill and high end restaurants don't put a bucket of sand outside so the smokers can put their "butts" in the sand and not on the sidewalk. this was disgusting…start taking some southie pride…thanks.

  12. Anonymous January 4, 2015 at 6:15 am

    So what are you suggesting? That we can leave are cars parked and not move them for only two months out of the year?

  13. J January 4, 2015 at 9:14 pm

    I agree with the above comment. Everyone could help out a little! Pick up a broom instead if taking a picture of the litter in front of your condo! Street cleaning helps, but how many of our neighbors didn't sweep the leaves in front of their houses into the street? It's our neighborhood and our community to take care of. I'm not sure I want to deal with moving my car around in the winter months.

  14. Anonymous January 6, 2015 at 3:55 pm

    Agree with the above comment, just grab a piece or two of trash when you see it on the ground and it'll take care of itself.

    Also, if they just put trash cans with lids on them instead of the opens ones they have it'd take care of most of this problem.  I notice the one by McGoo's the most, it's always full and wind is always blowing the trash everywhere.


  15. Gerry January 7, 2015 at 8:55 pm

    Nice thought, and I do it. I'm the ONLY one that does. The "NEW" residents will never do it. It used to be that the street cleaners still came by in December and did the best that they could. Now nothing! And did you get your bew property tax bill? YIKES!

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