Tag Archives: Leaf collection

Pinehurst now pines for the leaf vacuum

We’ve come of age in Pinehurst subdivision.

Based on what I witnessed this past weekend, it seems this is the year when all of the sudden the leaf vacuum matters.

No more taking a back seat to Fell or Broadway or School or even Maplewood.    We’ve got mature trees, too.   OK, not 70 footers with leaves covering every square inch of grass, but we’re getting there. 

I’ve even seen neighbors employ the tarp method of leaf transport from backyard to curb.    IMG_3208

I’ve noticed something else around here.

Maybe it’s our inexperience with massive quantities of leaves, but we don’t seem to be very sure where to pile them for collection.   More often than not, they’re being raked beyond the curb and placed in the gutter, which can plug up storm sewers in the event of heavy rain.   As a reminder to the newly initiated, here are the rules from the Public Works department:

Leaves should be raked to the back of the curb on the grass, or to the shoulder of the roadway. However, if you live in an area where cars are continuously parked in front of your residence, place the leaves at the edge of your driveway or as near to the driveway as possible. Keep leaf piles no higher than three (3) feet for safety. Please do not rake the leaves into the gutter or street.

The equipment used is a vacuum machine that is designed to collect only leaves. Brush and other items are not to be placed in the leaf pile. Items other than leaves will cause clogs and possible equipment malfunction. Mixed piles will not be collected.  

 The truck follows the same route as waste collection, but because of the high volume of leaves, it’s typically behind schedule.    Please be patient.

Town staff estimates the cost of leaf collection to be about $100,000 next fiscal year.    I don’t think the Town Council considered  for a moment eliminating a service which, with each passing fall,  becomes more important  to more citizens of this community.

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The leaf vac is coming to finish the job

That Nov. 30 snow put the leaf vacuum into hibernation.  And piles of leaves sat along the streets of Normal snow covered and uncollected.  And then they dispersed.

The leaf piles are back under control.  Well, most of them.

Leaves are being raked to the edge of the curb, but unfortunately some of the leaves are ending up in the street which is not permitted.

Leaves are being raked to the edge of the curb, but unfortunately some of the leaves are ending up in the street which is not permitted.

Like clockwork, residents in the leafy parts of Normal were raking even before the Mar. 9 announcement that the leaf vacuum will start making the rounds for two weeks beginning Monday.    They will be collected on the day of regular waste collection.

After the leaves are collected they are shredded and taken to the Illinois State University Farm near Lexington where they are composted with Normal’s landscape waste and animal manure from the farm.

Now that’s green.

In 2008, 9,167 cubic yards of leaves were collected from the public right-of-way, an increase over 2007 but short of the 11,156 cubic yards collected in 2002.

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