Featured Health & Environment

What’s The 311? Trash Covered Streets and Electrical Box Hit by Vehicle

Welcome back to our weekly update that highlights some of the cases appearing on 311 in the North End/Waterfront neighborhoods. All 311 cases are public information and can be found at 311.boston.gov.

Trash Left Out on Multiple Streets in The North End

On Prince Street, one 311 user writes, “Disgusting streets in the north end on garbage day! Almost every street around here looks like this!”

“Disgusting streets in the north end on garbage day! Almost every street around here looks like this!”

“Sidewalks around north end are terrible. This is on Prince Street this afternoon.”

Another 311 user writes, “Sidewalks around north end are terrible. This is on prince street this afternoon.”

“We are drowning in trash here in the North End. We should not have to live like this. It’s unsanitary and disgraceful. We have people who pick through the trash all night long and scatter the trash all over.”

“We are drowning in trash here in the North End. We should not have to live like this. It’s unsanitary and disgraceful. We have people who pick through the trash all night long and scatter the trash all over.” – Trash spewed about on Fulton Street

The original 311 posts can be found here, here, and here. These cases were submitted and opened on June 1st, 2018. The cases were then closed on June 4th, 2018 with the following message: “Closed with status: Case Resolved.”

Due to the volume of 311 cases regarding trash, not all of them could make it on this week’s post. Other cases can be found here, here, and here.

Electrical Box Needs Repair after Vehicle Hits it on North Margin Street

“Last Sunday, a vehicle struck an electrical box in front of 69 North Margin Street, North End. The subsequent debris was removed by DPW Staff. As you can see, electrical wires can be seen coming out of a pipe on the sidewalk. If these wires are live, they present a serious safety hazard. Please address this issue immediately.”

The original 311 post can be found here. This case was submitted and opened on June 1st, 2018. It was then closed later that same day with the following message: “Closed with status: Case Noted. Reason for reallocation: CITY FORCES PICKED UP AND MADE SAFE. THIS ELECTRIC BOX BELONGS TO ST. ANTHONYS FEAST IN THE NORTH END. THEY WERE NOTIFIED.” Additional information regarding this case (photo and comment) was provided to North End Waterfront.

Remember, to report a claim with 311, you can call 311, go to the 311 websitetweet at 311, or download the app. What do you think about these 311 cases? Follow our “What’s The 311?” tag to see past week’s postings!

20 Replies to “What’s The 311? Trash Covered Streets and Electrical Box Hit by Vehicle

  1. Why doesnt the city increase the fine violation and tie it to your auto registration? The trash in the neighborhoods has gotten out of hand.

    1. The violations are supposed to be tied to the violating property’s tax bill.

      The trash issue is out of control.

    2. The problem with tieing the fine to something when a multi-family condo building is involved, is which unit to tie the fine to. I was tagged once for some one else’s trash when I was out of town and had the tag expunged. Some of the trash is dumped by tourists and I have caught residents fron neighboring properties dumping in front of my place. It maybe time to install cameras as Joan says. Also notice this is worse around the first of the month. Transition time. I am thinking having a deposit paid for move in and move outs. Each building collects the deposit. If there is no problem, the deposit returns to the mover. If there is a problem, the fee goes to the City. This will make owners more responsible.

  2. Ditto I sent a 311 request for broken bricks on Fulton street I opened it at 6pm on a Tuesday and got a message at 9 am Wednesday that the case was closed – yes closed but not resolved

  3. Our neighborhood really need trash pick up 3 times a week. And a restriction on putting trash out the morning of the trash pick up.

    1. twice is plenty if you are separating your trash and recyclables. agree that trash should not be put on until the morning, but that idea usually creates a war of words on this website.

  4. Very frustrating. I’m not sure what the solution is. I’ve seen violators put their trash in front of my building (on non- collection days) when in fact they live several doors down to avoid their building getting fined.

  5. biking the city neighborhoods–I notice a lot–south end gets A for no trash–beacon hill gets a A also—even Charlestown is pretty clean—-back bay too—–north end rates a D–just saying what we all know—!

    1. This is a great observation. Does anyone have an idea whether these neighborhoods do something different?

      1. good question that probably has a few correct answers. i would say the biggest problem is greedy landlords who care way more about the amount of the rent check than the quality of the tenants.

  6. Comparing the neighborhoods- I would say that we have WAAAY more tourists in a more concentrated area. Also, trash breeds trash. If a bag is out, people walking by will add to the top because there are no trash cans.

  7. There are also several trash-pickers and/or can collectors that cut open bags and rifle through them and simply move onto the next building without cleaning up. They need to be fined or somehow dissuaded from adding to this problem. The trash collectors are not incentivized to, nor should they have to, pick up loose trash.

    1. Many of them are looking for returnable bottles. The bottle bill has created a bigger trash problem than it, supposedly solved.

  8. OSCAR: I agree with your comment. Late at night the trash-pickers begin their routes. Much of the mess is left behind — they don’t tidy up after. They kick the bags to listen for the cans rattling and split the bag open–garbage spills out and it’s left. You cannot fine landlords. Won’t work. People will drop their bundles here and there, albeit neat and tidy, but fining a landlord is useless. They are nowhere to be found. TRUTH: People are screened by real estate agencies….they don’t allows bums in the buildings, so we can’t blame the ‘greedy’, as you call them, landlords for the garbage problem. Well, we live in a very tight- knit checkerboard area with narrow sidewalks; lots of tourists; and we have to step over garbage that is not picked up until late morning in some areas. YANA: 3 x a week is not necessary. It will compound the problems.
    By the way, do you know how long it takes to run a tape of a camera? No one is willing to take that time 2x a week to see the violators. Cameras do not help. What helps? I don’t know. Tiny streets; narrow sidewalks; small congested neighborhood; trash pickers; late garbage pick up times……fertile ground for a mess !

  9. a simple change that would go a long way to helping the problem is not to allow trash to sit out overnight. ideally, trash pick up would not start until 8:00 am, while trash could not be put out until 7:00 am. of course, i know one size cannot not fit all, but the vast majority of people are still around and can put their trash out after 7:00 am.

  10. The problem is this issue has gone on far too long.Complints fall on deaf ears and politicians give us lip service.Every problem can be solved.

  11. The whole current system needs to be re-thought. Large receptacles in permanent locations where people can bring their trash and recyclables at their need/leisure seems to work in most European cities that I have been to.

  12. growing up w/families much larger, 7-8-9-up to 12 to a family never had a garbage problem, and yes we had garbage pick up 3 days a week just saying…….

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