Rubbish build-up “on the nose” for residents

Brendan Rees

Residents have expressed concern over an increasing amount of rubbish, furniture, and dumped trolleys littering sections of City Rd, in what they labelled as an “appalling, filthy state”.

“It appears that people are discarding their rubbish on any available surface, be it around trees, on ledges, on the pavement, on benches and phone booths,” resident Tash, who asked that her surname not be used, said.

“The walls and pavement are stained with dog urine everywhere. There appears to be no council maintenance, be it a street sweeper or adequate rubbish bins/cigarette butt bins.”

The City of Melbourne launched a new rapid response clean team in March, with crews targeting the streets of the CBD 12 hours a day for the next three months, however they will not operate in Southbank or Docklands.

But the council said City Rd footpaths and gutters were swept and cleaned twice every day, which was the case for other key thoroughfares, including Southbank Boulevard, Southbank Promenade, Power St, and Sturt St. All other streets in Southbank were swept and cleaned weekly.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said, “As we welcome more people into the city, we want Melburnians and visitors to enjoy the clean, green streets and laneways we’re renowned for”.

But Tash and other residents voiced their grievances about the poor state of Southbank’s cleanliness, particularly during March, which had seen a “sudden and rapid increase in abandoned shopping trolleys full of rubbish, discarded bits of furniture, and all other manner of general rubbish thrown everywhere”.

Another resident pointed to rubbish accumulating at a vacant block at 21-35 Power St, which they described as “disgraceful and potential health hazards”, while also highlighting dirty street frontages along City Rd.

Tash said she the council had responded to her report of rubbish, which was removed within two days, but there was “another accumulation of the same kind of pollution and littering, including another shopping trolley of rubbish”.

“This will inevitably lead to another weekly ugly unsanitary build up,” she said.

“Southbank is such a beautiful and popular place, and it saddens me as a resident to walk down the street and have this the reality of what the environment has become.”

Southbank3006 residents’ group vice-president Jannine Pattison said as Southbank was a destination suburb, sadly, “we will continue to see visitors treat our home with disrespect as they stumble out of places such as Crown and the Yarra River venues”.

“The biggest advice I can give to residents is ‘if you see something, say something’,” she said.

Southbank Residents’ Association president Tony Penna said he was acutely aware of some issues of littering, particularly overflowing rubbish bins.

“Certainly, rubbish bins are on the SRA’s radar; we have been in many discussions with the council, and we have seen improvements as a direct result of those consultations,” he said.

“However, in saying that there are some areas in Southbank that still need more attention,” he said, which he’d raised at the council’s April 4 meeting.

The council said litter bins in Southbank and Docklands were emptied at least once a day, while bins located in busy locations were serviced multiple times a day – with crews also proactively patrolling daily for graffiti.

Rubbish, graffiti, or bin issues can be reported via the City of Melbourne website, by phone (9658 9658), or by scanning QR codes on public litter bins. •

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