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Phoenix will change bulk trash pickup to appointment system

The Phoenix Public Works Department will begin offering scheduled bulk trash pickups.

The department will replace the current system where workers pick up large items on a quarterly basis with an appointment-based system. Starting Sept. 30, customers can schedule bulk trash pickups online or by calling public works. 

Justeen Cook, with the Public Works Department, says the current system requires workers to drive every street within the city four times a year looking for large items to collect.

“Knowing up front where those piles are and where the appointments are, allows us to identify how many crews we need for the day, and really shift those resources where we have or need the focus,” she said.

Rather than driving around where there is no bulk trash, Cook said crews could help with regular collections and clean up illegal dumping sites.

The public works department said 25% of the city’s 422,000 single-family households use bulk trash collection.

Customers can schedule four collections per year for things that are too big for regular garbage containers, including furniture, appliances and tree and shrub clippings. 

Before the appointment system begins, the department will notify customers in English and Spanish by mailing postcards and sharing information at community meetings. Quarterly bulk trash pickups will continue through the end of the year. 

The department says pickups can be scheduled throughout the year, “except for holiday weeks surrounding Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. The city will block out scheduled services to keep bulk trash off the streets during these designated holiday periods.”

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As a senior field correspondent, Christina Estes focuses on stories that impact our economy, your wallet and public policy.