If you haven’t heard, San Francisco is facing a massive budget deficit, and supervisors are looking to make some cuts. On the chopping block are SF’s new custom waste receptacles, which have taken over five years to design, debate, and deploy.
In the process, the Department of Public Works has already spent more than half a million dollars. But now, the city is staring down the barrel of a nearly $800 million deficit within the next two budget years. Mayor London Breed recently asked all departments cut at least 10% from their budgets.
So the Department of Public Works announced Friday that it’s pausing the long-awaited trash can project, per the Chronicle. Even after a public contest in 2022 that selected “the Slim Silhouette” as the winner, procurement of the trash cans is likely on hold. Reportedly, the department has been dragging its feet finding a manufacturer for the new trash cans — which could cost thousands of dollars each — anyway.
SF’s current trash cans have been in use since 1993, and sure, they're showing their age. The Department of Public Works has defended the new trash cans in the past, saying SF’s narrow sidewalks call for a smaller custom design that still prevents rummaging. But Supervisor Aaron Peskin didn’t mince words when he told the Chronicle: “This entire mission was driven by some narcissistic San Francisco exceptionalism that was always too costly. The whole thing is absurd. It’s time to stick that whole thing in the trash. Let’s not throw more good money after bad.”
Image via the Department of Public Works