A bit of a backup at the Boston hazardous-waste collection site

Steve Garfield surveys part of the line at the DPW facility near Millennium Park in West Roxbury today. It runs through 2 p.m. (Boston proof of residency required).



Free tagging: 


    A poorly planned program.

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    I bet more people than you think see these lines, limited dates, and the stupid hours (2pm on a Saturday?! Really?!) and just dump their old paints and oils in the regular trash.

    Boston does a lot of things right but hazardous waste collection is definitely not one of them.


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    2 p.m. on a Saturday is a perfect time for something like this - gives you some time to collect all the cans in your basement and load them into the trunk. And while the lines are long, they move quickly - the people who staff these events know what they're doing - you pop your trunk, they grab everything and you're done.

    The problem is there aren't enough of them.

    I was talking to the missus about this

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    Just a week ago. Doing this in the middle of July is a lot better than when it conflicts with Parkway Youth Soccer season (as others on this website have noted in the past.)

    I would hope that the long lines would be encouraging the people at Public Works to expand the program a bit. Of course, expansion costs money, and it's not like they make money doing this.

    And no, we didn't see anything on this, so the paint is still in the cellar.

    Paint can go in the regular trash

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    "Since it’s not hazardous, you can throw out latex and acrylic paint on your regular trash day. You need to make sure that the paint is completely dry inside the container before you throw it out." -- City of Boston website

    That's from the City of Boston site that you linked to earlier. They suggest popping the top off the paint can and letting it air dry or mixing in kitty litter (meow) to speed up the drying. They also ask that it then be put in a trash bag, no more than two cans to a bag. No lead paint, if that still exists.

    Whoa back atcha

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    I agree they need (a lot) more, but if 2pm on Saturday is the 'perfect' time then don't you think it'd be a good idea if that wasn't when the collection event ended?

    Whoa, nelly!

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    Yes, you're right, it ran from 9:30 to 2. Still plenty o' time to wake up, have a leisurely repast and then head down to the basement to find out what's on the slab and whisk it off to the collection area.

    Spoken like ...

    Someone who doesn't have to deal with the youth sports run around.

    Yes, that does go on all summer, at least for the older kids.

    Some communities rotate the times during the year so that people who work or worship on a particular day can also participate, as can people with morning commitments (see also: kids).


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    I see not one bike in line for recycling. This is an example of why you need a car in the City.


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    This is an example of why they should try to have these in more central locations than a garage that is literally on the edge of the city.

    That area isn't hard to get to

    I've biked to it for organized rides before. However, it isn't near where anybody lives, either.

    Last time I went past such an event in Somerville, people were lined up with bike trailers. When my aunt painted her condo, she walked the leftovers to the recycle in her shopping cart. The problem isn't lack of car - the problem is not holding enough events in actual neighborhoods.

    But, hey, if you are silly enough to think that bringing paint to a collection once per year is really worth $2000 (at the bare minimum) that it takes to own, insure, and maintain a car, maybe you shouldn't be playing with toxics? There are these things called car rentals and zip cars, too.

    In the neighborhoods would be better

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    Right, I bike there too, but not everyone bikes. Why not have these in each neighborhood so people can walk over?


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    Actually, there was at least one bike leaving the drop off this morning just after 9, when there was already a long line.

    My husband and I would bike to these if there was one a little closer to our home, depending on the amount of stuff we have to drop off

    Skip the lines

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    and save these items for parking space savers. Public Works will come to you and remove them.

    Next Recycling Event

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    Next hazardous waste recycle event for Boston residents is 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. August 19 at Boston Public Works building on Gardner St., WR. They will also shred documents.

    In October there will be recycling at UMass Boston.

    Another WR date?

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    Is this August date true? I have not seen it posted anywhere.

    I went at noon and there was

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    I went at noon and there was no line. drove right up to the site. there were a few cars ahead of me on the site but more or less zipped in and out. Worth it.