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Citizens Against Litter

November 2005 Newslitter

In this Newslitter: Lost and Found; Mr. Litterman named to Clean Pittsburgh Commission; Three litter "bull's eyes"; Bill Peduto to the rescue; Your Lit Parade; "I Litter" awards; Garbagevilles; State of Shadyside; What's in store for Negley?; "Beer Garden" house; The lady in red; Blown away; Ask Mr. Litterman

Lost and Found

Four 37-cent postage stamps. Picked up on Walnut Street near Bellefonte. Like new. If they're yours, call 412-688-9120. Describe them and make arrangements to claim.

Mr. Litterman named to Clean Pittsburgh Commission

Maybe he should be renamed "Mr. Clean." Mr. Litterman, a.k.a. Boris Weinstein, is one of 15 people selected by Mayor Murphy to serve on the new Clean Pittsburgh Commission. CPC's mission is to make Pittsburgh a cleaner city by sparking neighborhood initiatives against litter, illegal dumpsites, abandoned cars and graffiti and for beautification of hillsides, streams, rivers, parks and open spaces. Weinstein will serve as secretary of CPC. He started Citizens Against Litter in Shadyside, a volunteer group that got up and running last winter.

Other commission members are: David Mazza (Chairman) and Ginette Walker Vinski of Pennsylvania Resources Council, Inc.; Danielle Crumrine (Vice Chair) of PA Clean Ways of Allegheny County, Inc.; Linda Binstock, Mayor's Office; Phyllis Gibson, Department of Public Works, Environmental Services; Dennis Meyer, DPW, Partners in Parks; Patty Chavez, DPW, Graffiti Removal; Officer Louise Turner, Department of Public Safety, Police Bureau; Mary Fleming, Public Safety, Bureau of Building Inspection; Bill Harlak, City Source Associates; Bruce Kraus, South Side Chamber of Commerce; Joseph Kramer; and Maelene Myers, East Liberty Development, Inc. A 15th member is yet to be named.

Three litter "bull's eyes"

Three special targets. They're not circles, which is the preferred definition of bull's eye. A bull's eye is also defined as "anything that precisely achieves a desired goal". One goal of Citizens Against Litter is to take aim at three areas in Shadyside that have been signaled out for different reasons and to do everything we can to keep litter under control there. They are:

Fifth Avenue runs the entire upper length of Shadyside. It is our most heavily traveled street. More people from different places form impressions of Shadyside by what they see on Fifth Avenue as they drive by in their cars, trucks and buses.

More people from different places head for Centre Avenue as their destination because of the Hillman Center, Shadyside Hospital/Medical Office Building, Family House and the Marriott Courtyard. We want their impression of Shadyside, seen through Centre Ave, to be a positive one of a clean, litter-free zone.

Dumpster Alley can turn into a real dump if Walnut Street merchants take their eyes off the ball. We don't want this to happen. We want our backside to be as clean and appealing as our front. We want the alley to look and smell like a main street, not a dirty alley.

Bill Peduto to the rescue

On Saturday morning, October 8, an e-mail was sent to Councilman Bill Peduto requesting a trash container for a litter-collecting spot on Centre Avenue. By Saturday afternoon, Councilman Peduto had the problem resolved. Read this exchange and you'll agree.

From: Boris Weinstein
To: Bill Peduto
Re: Need a Trash Container

Bill. There are more places in Shadyside that need trash containers and I know they don't grow on trees, but I would like to suggest at least one place.

It's at the corner of Cypress and Centre, right smack in front of the Boston Market and at the bus stop. We clean this spot religiously but there are always fast food wrappers, bags, food containers and drinking cups on the wall, pavement and gutters. In a way you can't blame the people because there is no place for them to get rid of the foodstuff when they finish or before boarding a bus.

A trash container there would make a world of difference in the appearance. As I will point out in the November Newslitter, that strip of Centre Avenue from Aiken to Morewood is probably Shadyside's most visited destination by Pittsburghers and non-Pittsburghers because of the hospital, Hillman Center, Family House and the Marriott and we should be showing our best side.

A suggestion: Maybe Boston Market would pay for part or all of it?

Thanks for your consideration.

From: Bill Peduto
To: Boris Weinstein

Boris. I set aside 4 decorative trash containers for Oakland, Bloomfield and Shadyside in case we missed a critical spot. Thank you for being the city's eyes on this. I will forward this location to Department of Public Works and ask that a container be placed there in the next week.

The trash container was put in place a few days later.

Your Lit Parade

Boring. Same old, same old. There's hardly anything new on Your Lit Parade this month. The only new category to break into the Top Ten is discarded cigarette packs. Advertising fliers continue on top of the list:

"I Litter" awards

October's lineup of nonprofit and commercial litterers, scattering their advertising fliers around Walnut Street and side streets, is just as unimpressive as in previous months. The following litterers, many repeaters, account for about 30% of the litter in this area:

Garbagevilles

We're not too endangered this month. Hooray. Residences, buildings or other places mentioned here are either ON the Garbageville list or OFF it.

ON Garbageville list:

OFF Garbageville list:

State of Shadyside

During a driving/walking inspection of the neighborhood on October 21, this volunteer came away with a positive feeling about litter on our streets, gutters, pavements and grassy places. Shadyside is looking pretty clean and making progress. Some specifics:

What's in store for Negley?

South Negley Avenue -- from Ellsworth to Walnut -- has been looking good on the side of the street that permits parking. Keeping it that way will be the challenge because every late fall and winter this area turns into a mess from the accumulation of fallen leaves that become wet and caked onto the street. Property owners don't clear away the leaves when they start falling and Public Works doesn't clean streets during this period. That combination is a clean freak's hell.

"Beer Garden" house

As of October 21, the most infamous address in Shadyside continues to be clean as a whistle. The beer garden at 5804 Walnut Street (near Maryland) is not open for business. Let's drink to that.

The lady in red

A volunteer picks up two ATM receipts and walks toward one of 30 trash containers on Walnut Street. A lady in red, walking toward the volunteer, accidentally drops a gum or candy wrapper on the pavement. She takes one step forward. She sees the volunteer pick up litter so she takes two steps backward and picks up her wrapper-turned-to-litter. Our lady in red was blushing as she passed the volunteer. Picking up is contagious.

Blown away

Think back to October 18. It was windy that day. It was also garbage pick up day on some streets in Shadyside. A Citizens Against Litter volunteer was walking up Copeland Street and there it was. An overturned garbage can, blowing litter every which way, and turning a clean street into a littered one. The volunteer retreated to his home for a supply of litter bags. He undid nature's bad deed and restored that street to its normal condition -- clean. A resident of Copeland Street was coming from the other direction. She, too, sees the wind-tossed litter and picks up some of the mess. Picking up is contagious.

Ask Mr. Litterman

Q: A young woman sitting in a freshly-cleaned UPMC bus shelter on Centre Avenue asks, "Are you employed by the City or the hospital?
A: "Neither," Mr. Litterman answers. "I do this on my own. I like things clean."

Q: A man in his 20's sees Mr. Litterman picking up litter in front of Prantl's Bakery and asks, "Do you do this all the time? Thank you."
A: "Yes I do," answers Mr. Litterman. "I like things clean." (The young man didn't bend to help Mr. Litterman pick up but he did thank him.)

Q: "Are you off-duty?"
A "Yes," Mr. Litterman replies. But in reality, people who pick up after litterers are never really "off-duty". When we spot litter we bend down and pick up, bend down and pick up. As good neighbors, picking up litter is our duty.

Recent Litter-ature

A complete list of past Litterature is available in our archives.


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