Skip to content
CityLab
Transportation

The Secret Art of Street Sweeping

How New York cleans 6,000 miles of roads every day.
relates to The Secret Art of Street Sweeping
Shutterstock

Street sweeping is one of those vital municipal functions that affects everyone in the city, even though we know very little about it. Perhaps that's ignorance by choice. In case it isn't, we asked Douglas Marsiglia, chief of cleaning operations for the New York City Department of Sanitation, to give readers some insight into the process. And what better time to do so than the fall?

"A lot of people don't realize what a great service it is," Marsiglia says. "Especially this time of year — you've got all the leaves come down. That stuff would just be sitting in the street."