Urban Corps of San Diego Hired to Clean City Sidewalks

Story and picture taken from the Carlsbad Patch

Under a new contract with Urban Corps of San Diego County, city sidewalks and other surfaces will be cleaned more frequently while providing much needed job experience to young adults.

The city previously contracted with a private company to do this work.  Under that contract, the Village area and seawall were cleaned twice a year.  For the same cost, Urban Corps crews will perform work throughout the city three times a week, year round. 

“We’ve been employing Urban Corps for 10 years for other projects, and they deliver highly dependable, professional service for a reasonable price,” Dobbs said. “It also helps Urban Corps members develop job skills and gain experience.”

Urban Corps is a locally based nonprofit conservation corps that provides a high school education and job training to young adults between the ages of 18 and 25. Since 1989 Urban Corps has given more than 10,000 youths who did not succeed in traditional school settings a second chance to develop new skills and earn an education.

Beginning on Oct. 4, Urban Corps will provide a pressure-washing crew that will scrub sidewalks as directed by the City of Carlsbad Transportation Department street maintenance team.

“Urban Corps will be sending a team with a truck three days a week,” said Clayton Dobbs, a utilities supervisor for the City of Carlsbad. “We’ll focus their efforts downtown and on the seawall, because we get so much foot traffic there, but they’ll be working throughout Carlsbad, wherever we need them.”

The cleaning crews will wear uniforms so they’ll be clearly identified. They will start work in the downtown Carlsbad Village at 6 a.m. and be finished by 9:30 a.m., so they’ll be gone when most businesses open for the day.

Dobbs noted that it’s not just debris and gum that needs a pressure-wash. He said that some parts of the city, especially La Costa, experience algae buildup where groundwater rises to the surface and forms pools on streets and sidewalks.

Pressure-washing sidewalks isn’t the first task that Urban Corps has performed for the City of Carlsbad. The city employs the group to clean litter daily and remove large bulky items that are dumped on the sides of roads. Urban Corps also clears debris from storm water outlets so they flow smoothly, and cleans graffiti from city walls and surfaces.

The contract for the work is not to exceed $68,000 a year, and is renewable every year for five years.