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(Photo: from Moncton City Council, DMCI)

62,000 pounds of trash collected in downtown Moncton

By Tara Clow Jul 20, 2023 | 8:44 AM

Positive feedback so far for a pilot project to help clean up downtown Moncton.

It was launched on May 1st by Downtown Moncton Centreville Inc.

The project was created based on feedback from merchants in the downtown, and a smaller project that was done in December during the World Juniors.

Executive Director Patrick Richard says ten full-time employees are working with the project seven days a week between the hours of 7 am and 5 pm each day.

“Between May 1st and June 30th, 62,000 pounds of garbage was collected in 60 days, that’s about 1000 pounds of garbage a day,” Richard told Moncton City Council during an update on the project this week.

“An example of some of the stuff we’re picking up. So far we’ve taken 457 abandoned shopping carts off the street and we’ve returned them to the local merchants. Something we don’t actively look for, but we do come across is syringes. We filled 12 sharps containers in the first few months, averaging about 250 syringes per container. So it’s around 3000 needles collected without actively going out and looking for it,” Richard says.

Waste also includes old refrigerators and bike parts.

Moncton Deputy Mayor Shawn Crossman was shocked with the number of syringes that have been picked up, “I’m hoping that council will have a discussion with some of the agencies in the downtown core and find out exactly what’s going on.”

Richard says they are cleaning up in areas of encampments, and shelters and that is where the syringes are prominently found.

They go to 19 sites every day and they’ve had 60 formal requests for cleanups, mostly from bylaw, the Codiac RCMP. Moncton Fire and even from City Councillors. Over 1200 cleanups have been done in the first 60 days.

Richard adds they have also cleaned up graffiti in parking garages and on other sites.

Harvest House Atlantic has partnered with DMCI to assist with the cleanups, and Richard thanked Executive Director Marc Belliveau for his assistance.

Councillor Charles Leger also noted that the businesses have noticed all of the work that is being done, “There’s a noticeable difference and I’m seeing it with respect to businesses. They can’t believe the transformation, even just the graffiti removal that you’ve been able to do in and around St. George Street has been really great.”

$180, 000 was initially invested in this six-month pilot project that will run until October 31st.

Richard says the hope is to make it permanent in 2024 at a cost of $360,000 for the year.


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