City of Raleigh
Existing Park Facility Outdoor
Refuse and Recyclables Collection
Business Case Evaluation
April 2012
The City of Raleigh Parks Department’s refuse collection crew and the Solid Waste Services
SWS) Department are responsible for the collection and removal of refuse and recyclables
from the outdoor areas of City owned park facilities, respectively. The Parks Department
currently makes 160 trips per week to 81 of the City’s parks for refuse collection from the
outdoor areas only (note that refuse from park building dumpsters is collected via a third party
contract and is not part of this evaluation). In addition, SWS makes 38 trips per week for the
collection of recyclables from outdoor areas and the buildings. A list of the subject park
facilities, collection frequency, and recyclable collection locations can be found in Attachment A.
The current collection strategy for outdoor refuse and recyclables at the City’s park facilities
represents an estimated total of approximately 50,000 miles driven and 5,700 gallons of fuel
consumed each year to collect and deliver to the landfill, with a total operational expense to the
City of approximately $0.27 million per year.
The requirement for City staff to physically walk the parks’ outdoor areas will always be
necessary, but there is potential to reduce the actual number of trips to each park facility. This
reduction in trips represents an opportunity to increase efficiency in City resources such as staff
time, fuel, and truck maintenance requirements. However, it would require a shift in strategy for
current collection practices from these facilities. This business case evaluation will review and
recommend a path forward for the City based on the evaluation of financial and non-financial
factors for a range of potential options for the City’s refuse and recyclables collection at existing
park facilities.
Problem to be Addressed
A reduction in the number of trips required each week for recyclables collection at the City’s
existing park facilities presents an opportunity for improved efficiency with City resources: staff
time, fuel, and truck maintenance requirements.
The following options outline the range of potential options for the City’s removal of recyclables
from the City’s park facilities:
Status quo:
Continue current operations, including separate trips to park facilities for
the collection of refuse and recyclables.
This option would continue the current level of service for refuse and
recyclables collection.
Carry in, Carry out Recyclables Policy:
The City would adopt a policy that in all
outdoor areas of City owned park facilities visitors would be responsible to carry out all
recyclables they have brought into the park with them.
This option would continue the current level of service for refuse collection,
but shift the service objective to remove recyclables from outdoor park areas
from the City to the park visitors. In addition, the removal of recyclables from
park building facilities would require the shift toward a weekly pick-up
coordinated with the local SWS recyclable collection route.