NYC Got Rid Of Trash Cans In Bid To Reduce Trash, And It Backfired

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Andrew Follett Energy and Science Reporter
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Attempts by New York City to remove trash cans from subway stops in a bid to reduce trash and rats have officially failed, local Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) officials admitted Wednesday.

MTA ended the 6-year-long program after two separate audits found it only increased the amount of garbage in stations and caused more track fires.

“It took the MTA five years, but we are gratified that it recognized the need to end this controversial experiment that showed little to no improvements in riders’ experience,” Thomas DiNapoli, New York’s State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, said in a statement. “We’re encouraged the agency continues to address cleanliness in other ways. Straphangers, who have just been burdened with another fare increase, deserve cleaner stations that are free of rats.”

DiNapoli’s office regularly attacked MTA over the plan to remove trash cans. The MTA program ultimately removed trash cans at 39 different subway stations across the city, which was supposed to reduce the amount of overflowing garbage and rats.

“It wasn’t the most efficient way to clean the stations,” Beth DeFalco, a spokeswoman for MTA, said in a statement. “The MTA is using other ambitious programs to improve station cleanliness including through the highly successful ‘Operation Track Sweep.'”

MTA estimates that it removes about 40 tons of trash from the subway system each day.

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