January 19th, 2021

Garbage pickup changes lack common sense

By Letter to the Editor on July 4, 2020.

So, now yet again another decision by mayor and council that lacks common sense and proper judgment. I am referring to the new changes where all garbage pickup will now be done on the front roadways and not in the back alleys.

Supposedly the decision is based on an analysis that alley ways are “softer” and that sometimes there are obstacles. Yet to me that defies logic as we have had the “Tarleck tubs” and bigger trucks for many years. The analysis obviously did not include the design and layout of older neighbourhoods nor any input from the residents. It may be something that works in the newer neighbourhoods, but it is not practical for us that live in the older neighbourhoods.

Houses that have alleyways were built and designed with that in mind. Ninety per cent of those houses have driveways and garages in the back. For that reason, we also have a lot more on-street parking. I myself seriously have no place to store my bins close to the front. I have no front driveway and the passageway down the side of my house is too narrow. If I continue to store my bins out back then it means hauling them full and through the snow, which is not a feasible option. So, my only alternative is to keep them in the middle of my front yard. It means most bins will be out front and visible. Considering that garbage pickup is every other week, what an eyesore that is going to be. A bunch of full, overflowing garbage bins.

Next is the issue of on-street parking. That is going to dramatically affect where we can put the bins in the morning before people leave for work. And then considering that the bins will be out there for most of the day until people get home, it will then limit our amount of parking. So, probably what will happen then is that people will move the bins up and onto the sidewalk so they have space to park. This in turn will then block the route for pedestrians. And speaking of “obstacles,” how is a bunch of parked cars not obstacles for the garbage trucks?

So, I would like to know how and even why the “analysis” was done. If it’s not broke, don’t fix it. Council needs to stop being so authoritarian and making decisions based on a few and not the whole.

Lori Bauman


Share this story:

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Citi Zen

All excellent points, Lori. The placement of the bins in front of residences is making Lethbridge look like a slum city. Admittedly, some new communities don’t have alleys, but the majority of those homes have front access driveways and garages, unlike many more established areas.
The City has been unable to stop people from parking on the front street adjacent to my garbage bins, so when that happens they don’t get emptied. Should I be placing the bin in the driving lane instead? Really?
Then there’s the wind. And the tumbled bins, garbage strewn the length of the block.
My alley pickup has worked fine for 75+ years. Changing that is total nonsense, and I can only think it’s to justify someone’s job in City Hall.
Whatever happened to common sense?


agreed! another of the city’s stupid changes, likely to allow the mgr involved to pad the resume with an initiative ans faux outcome.
bins on the street look ugly, they are messy, and on that rare day in town when the wind blows hard, they get flipped and strewn about making parking and driving less than ideal. at the very least, paved alleys should be fine for collection.


Good letter Lori! I am also affected by this change. Makes no sense at all. I have a 30 foot wide paved back lane behind my property so navigability is not the problem. I heard that the weight of the trucks may be a factor as well. If the piss poor way the city fixed my alley last year is common that may be true. I had a friend who does paving and he commented when it was done it wouldn’t last a year. And he was right. Although the city likes to put concrete medians up like they own stock in the concrete company (28 street north) I’ve heard from people who have contacted the city about the change to front pickup and have been told they’re rude and arrogant. “Read the bylaw” is a common response. Maybe that bylaw needs to be examined.

Seth Anthony

Let’s not forget that our brilliant civic leaders like to call Lethbridge “L.A.”, in comparison to Los Angeles. It doesn’t get much lamer than that. That’s why they spent millions of our money on those stupid ass bike lanes on 7th Av S for a small city in which it’s winter or something close to it most of the year. Our civic leaders like to pretend they’re something much more important than they actually are, and that Lethbridge is akin to a large city in California.

Citi Zen

This is clearly an issue that’s important to a lot of homeowners. Let’s make it an election issue next round. Along with a few other concerns, of course! Time to clean up City Hall.