Dirty downtown complaints force Hamilton to boost cleanup plans

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Published August 8, 2023 at 3:44 pm

CHRISTL DABU/INTHEHAMMER.COM
CHRISTL DABU/INTHEHAMMER.COM

Hamilton says it’s ramping up its cleaning efforts, starting with sweeping up sidewalk litter seven days a week in the downtown core in response to growing concerns about the cleanliness of the area.

Hamilton Mayor Andrea Horwath said staff are also finalizing plans for sweeping the roadways and cycle lanes, trimming weeds, picking up debris and removing graffiti in public areas.

“In response to an increasing number of concerns raised by residents, businesses, and property owners, staff have identified opportunities for service level enhancements to improve the overall cleanliness and appearance of the Downtown core,” wrote Horwath on X, formerly known as Twitter, on Aug. 6. “Our downtown should be a place that Hamiltonians can be proud to visit, and proud to show off – this is an important step in this endeavour.”

CHRISTL DABU/INTHEHAMMER.COM

CHRISTL DABU/INTHEHAMMER.COM

Illegal graffiti, rundown buildings and violence have been  problems in downtown areas.

The situation got so bad that some downtown businesses raised their concerns about a spike in violent incidents and illegal activity, which prompted police to increase their downtown presence.

Horwath had earlier told inthehammer.com that the City is partnering with the big players in the core, such as the Business Improvement Area and police, to help improve downtown areas.

“There’s a lot of pieces to some of the challenges that we’re facing,” she said in an interview with inthehammer.com publisher Khaled Iwamura in June. “But the post-pandemic crisis that our downtown is facing is being played out in downtowns across the country and around the world.” 

The pandemic and its fallout have “significantly exacerbated” some of the challenges facing the City, she said.

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