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New trash compactor cans installed in Yerba Buena

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Tech savvy meets garbage

Supervisor Jane Kim (in red) and the members of nonprofit Yerba Buena Community Benefit District (YBCBD).
Supervisor Jane Kim (in red) and the members of nonprofit Yerba Buena Community Benefit District (YBCBD).
Photos courtesy of YBCBD

Yerba Buena welcomed nine new Bigbelly trash compactor receptacles today. What makes these bins ostensibly better than regular cans lining city streets is the ability to compact dingy, dirty waste inside.

Each unit comes equipped with an internal compactor that allows it to compress five times more trash than current bins. It also has wifi connected to a solar power transmitter that signals collectors to empty the bins once full. The newfangled features will hopefully prevent overflow while reducing the need for pick-ups.

The cans can be opened using the metal handle or—even better—the foot pedal, ideal for germaphobes who would prefer not to touch something previously fondled by countless passersby.

The new units can be found along parts of Market, Mission, Fourth and Fifth Streets, which are some of the busiest intersections in the city.

In 2017 alone, YBCBD teams removed more than 300,000 pounds of trash (equivalent to 10,000 trash bags) from area streets, cleaned up more than 1,100 overflowing public garbage cans, and received roughly 5,500 sidewalk sweep requests by merchants and residents.