Streets in SF’s Tenderloin District to be pressure washed everyday because of poop problem

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — “Everyday — it’s a common occurrence, seeing a feces every single day, especially the Tenderloin. It’s really bad. You can’t go with about two steps without stepping on something,” one resident said. 

It’s politely called code brown — reports called in about poop, either human or animal, left on the sidewalk for people to step in.  

The Tenderloin has the highest number of 3-1-1 calls for sidewalk cleanliness issues, including code brown calls.  

So now to help try to battle the grime on the sidewalks, the Tenderloin Community Benefit District is upping the number of times the 30 square blocks of the neighborhood are blasted with industrial grade pressure washers from once a month to once a week.  

This is thanks to the fact that the property owners in the area agreed to continue paying an extra assessment for another 15 years.

Now their street team members will also carry smaller portable power washers in their carts, so they can spot clean more efficiently.

“It runs off a 5 gallon tank of water but you’re able to add a little soap to and it really does allow us to address this code browns much more quickly and much more effectively than we had before,” said 

This quadrupling of sidewalk pressure walking by the Tenderloin Community Benefit District is on top of what the city’s public works is already doing to combat grime.

“We steam clean and hose down with fire hoses the actual sidewalks of the Tenderloin every single day in the mornings,” said Peter Lau with the Department of Public Works.

Supervisor Matt Haney is enthusiastic about the added washings and says more needs to be done to help this neighborhood.

“We all know that we need more foot patrols out here,” Haney said. “We need more homeless out reach out here. We need more bathrooms open, we need more trash cans. We want a clean, safe and healthy community for everyone who lives here and works here. This is a huge, huge step forward.”

Those behind this effort say it’s more than just having cleaner streets.

It’s about building neighborhood pride. 

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