By Dylan Deprey
Too much junk in the attic? College student with a broken futon? What about that cracked lamp sitting next to the raggedy mattress in the garage? For the next five weeks, Milwaukee residents have the chance to declutter their lives free of charge.
Project Clean & Green is the City-based program that allows residents a week-long grace period to set out bulky items on the curb with their garbage. DPW crews will collect everything from that raggedy set of old tires to that accumulating pile of leaves and grass clippings in the backyard.
“It’s a perfect time to avoid the trip or the charge,” Mayor Tom Barrett said in a press conference Monday, May 12.
Normally, disposing of mattresses and broken furniture runs around a $50- $150 fee. Project Clean & Green is the only time when the City collects tires and grass clippings. It is also the only time outside of the Fall period when the City will collect yard and garden debris and leaves.
Milwaukee is sectioned into seven zones that coordinate with the seven weeks of the program. Residents can put out their bulky items alongside their garbage bins on their normal pick up days. They can also leave up to two cubic yards of grass clippings and yard debris in paper bags.
Laura Daniels, DPW Director of Operations, said the program was to give residents an opportunity to clean out their garages and help people in apartments a chance to declutter.
“If you can reuse your household goods, donate them if there’s better use for them, but if they are broken or discarded, we’re happy to be picking this up during the Clean & Green program,” Daniels said.
For curb pick-up, DPW asked that residents kept all items, including brush and leaves, out of the street. They should instead be placed along the area between the sidewalk and curb, on the lawn edge if there is no sidewalk, or at the end of the driveway. For alley collection, residents can place items at the alley line.
Although crews will pick up bulky items, they will not collect appliances, TVs, electronics, construction debris, and paint. These items can be brought to a City Drop Off Center for proper disposal. Household hazardous waste is collected by MMSD for all Milwaukee County residents at several permanent locations.
“I want people to know this program exists because it really helps our residents and we hope they can take advantage of it,” Barrett said.
For more information on your zone and applicable items visit Milwaukee.gov/cleanandgreen