Trash pickup in North End is garbage, residents say

People in Winnipeg’s North End are kicking up a stink about the bad smell in their neighbourhood.

Many of the area's metal backlane dumpsters, known as autobins, are overflowing with garbage and haven't been emptied in almost two weeks, despite numerous complaints.

The city blames a combination of factors. It says people are cleaning out their homes and filling the autobins before they are permanently removed and replaced with smaller, individual trash carts for each household.

It also says the garbage trucks used to empty them are old and often break down.

Meanwhile, the garbage is being baked in the intense summer sun.

“It's awful, like it's really frustrating. I know we're switching over to the new bins so you're kinda going, 'Is this a contract issue or are they trying to do everything in one shot?'" said area residents Meghan Da Silva.

"But I mean, with the heat like this, it's awful. You can't handle it.”

Aside from the putrid smell, there is also a danger concern as the pile provides a temptation for firebugs, she said.

The autobins have long been a lightning rod for fires and illegal dumping, which is part of the reason the city is getting rid of them.

It's all part of a major overhaul to Winnipeg's trash collection system that will cost residents $50 annually.

The city is delivering 240-litre rollout carts to all single family homes, replacing all other garbage collection methods. The city will also provide homes with a 240-litre recycling cart, replacing the current manual blue box collection program.

The new waste management plan is aimed at increasing the waste diversion rate to 50 per cent or more by reducing household garbage and significantly increasing household recycling.

The city says all autobins will be gone by mid-August.