The Lincoln Square BID’s Clean Team performs the most Herculean tasks throughout the year, yet it has the lowest turnover rate for personnel. In winter months, the diligent crew, contracted through Atlantic Maintenance, shovel titanic masses of heavy snow from crosswalks, catch basins, fire hydrants, bus shelters and Lincoln Square’s 10 Broadway islands a.k.a. malls. In the heat of summer, the team picks up brooms and sweeps sidewalks going 18 inches from the curb into the street.
And, no matter the weather, area trash receptacles are emptied daily and park benches, tables and chairs are wiped clean. Wielding paint and scrub brushes, the crew banishes graffiti, scrubs trash receptacles and paints lampposts, parking meters and street sign poles. In dry months, the team hefts portable tanks to scrub dirt and grime from corners.
Working seven days a week in shifts from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m, the 14 members of the Clean Team ensure that Lincoln Square is free of litter and pleasing to the eye.
Lincoln Square is one of the City’s most highly trafficked areas. Each year, an estimated 23 million pedestrians use its sidewalks and public spaces. Consequently, the BID spends over 50% of its annual budget on maintenance and public improvements.
In the Broadway Malls, a crew of Green Keepers hired through the Goddard Riverside Community center, a wonderful local services organization, aids the Clean Team.
The BID’s partnership with Midtown Community Court provides the help of non-violent offenders who are serving community service. The program has grown from two to five days a week, a big help in the unending task of seeing that Lincoln Square remains the best it can be.
The BID likes to be among the first in the City to adopt programs created to help neighborhood sidewalks and streets stay clean and safe. Several years ago, we signed up as participants in the Department of Sanitation’s new recycling bin program. A total of 18 recycling bins have been placed in public spaces around Lincoln Square: 9 green-lidded cans for paper and cardboard, and 9 blue-lidded cans for glass, metal and plastic. The large cans are a good-looking and colorful addition to our streetscape, and complement the 100 BID branded Victor Stanley trash receptacles, all of which were replaced in 2015. This winter, thanks to a grant from Council Member Helen Rosenthal, we installed our first Big Belly units, solar powered trash compacting and recylcing receptacles, at key locations to lower the number of unsightly trash bags on corners.