Getting “Trashed” on Opening Day, 2015

We at D3, like many people throughout Detroit, love the Tigers Opening Day celebration. It is a special day that marks the beginning of warm weather, outdoor activities and of course another hopeful season of baseball. Each year throngs of Tigers fans (and those who like an excuse to celebrate) from all over the region head downtown to eat, drink and be merry in advance of the first Tigers home game. Today, as in previous years, thousands of cabin-fever-afflicted fans will visit their favorite tailgating spots, have a few beverages, grill a few ‘dogs, cheer on our team…. and then leave behind a ton of trash. Unfortunately, while the celebration is great for Detroit, it has typically left behind a mess that can take days to clean up.

Tasked with cleaning up much of this trash is Clean Downtown, a program paid for by downtown businesses that picks up trash from about 200 receptacles placed strategically throughout the central business district. They also pick it up from sidewalks, the middle of the street, and everywhere else. According to Ryan Epstein, who manages the Clean Downtown program for the Downtown Detroit Partnership (DDP) in conjunction with Goodwill Industries, Detroit’s Opening Day celebration produces around ten tons of garbage, which is one of the their biggest trash days of the year. To put that in perspective, a Ford Focus weighs about one and a half tons.

While it is easy to pick up trash contained in cans, much of the Opening Day trash inevitably ends up on the ground, creating more of a burden for the Clean Downtown program and the hard-working crews who help to pick up Detroit’s streets and sidewalks. To help the Clean Downtown crews this opening day, we’ve created a map showing the locations of the receptacles.

If you’re a data geek as well as a baseball fan, we’ve made the receptacle locations downloadable via our data portal. The data include the locations of the Clean Downtown receptacles as well as those public receptacles supplied by the city.

Enjoy opening day, and thanks for helping to keep downtown beautiful.