In just over four weeks a team of workers is scheduled to start keeping downtown Evanston and other business districts clean.

Paul Zalmezak, the city’s economic development manager, told residents at a 1st Ward meeting Thursday evening that the half-dozen clean team members plus a supervisor will begin work on Monday, Nov. 14.

Paul Zalmezak.

“They’ll work five days, 40 hours a week, cleaning our business districts,” Zalmezak said.

Each worker, he said will have broom and dust pan and will sweep sidewalks and curb lines.

He said they’d also tackle tasks like removing “the dead pigeon at the curb next to Colectivo.”

Once they’re done with the sidewalk cleanup, Zalmezak said, they may have a special assignment each day — like cleaning stickers off light poles or removing all the gum stuck to the sidewalk.

City Council approved a one-year, $500,000 contract with New York City-based Streetplus to run the program on Sept. 12. The program is being paid for with federal American Rescue Plan Act funds.

Zalmezak said the team will start each day downtown, but then cover other business districts later in the day.

They’ll also be trained to call 311 to report issues like burned-out street lights, dead trees and rat burrows to prompt a response from other city crews.

They’ll be “additional eyes and ears to support all of us who live and work in Evanston,” Zalmezak added.

During the winter, he said, the new workers will clear snow from crosswalks at intersections. But, he added, clearing snow from in front of storefronts will remain the responsibility of property owners and their tenants.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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