As the watchful eyes of Rugby World Cup visitors descend upon Auckland city streets, it’s hoped a new initiative will ensure their eyes feast on all things beautiful.
Launching this month, Heart of the City and Auckland Council are jointly funding the "Beautify Your City" campaign over the 10 months leading up to World Cup, in a bid to encourage city businesses to do away with their "dirty deeds" and keep the CBD clean and rubbish free.
The campaign will centre on educating businesses to put out their rubbish and recycling at the correct times and discourage illegal dumping on the inner city streets.
Six hotspots—areas where issues frequently occur —will feature colourful, temporary flowerbeds and illegal dumping warnings.
"The flower beds will help beautify the problem areas of the city and remind businesses and residents of the need to do their bit to keep the city clean," says Heart of the City’s project manager, Jane Stewart. "It's about encouraging businesses to look at their procedures."
It’s also out with the old red rubbish bags and in with the floral bags. The red bag is being replaced with a purple pansy decorated bag and the clear plastic recycling bag is now decorated with a green hedge.
In what Stewart describes as a way to get people out of bad habits, Heart of the City's BIG little city guides will hand deliver supplies of the new rubbish and recycling bags and educational information to 1700 businesses in time for the campaign starting on 11 November.
She says there is a problem with businesses putting out their rubbish bags at the wrong time, which means bags aren't collected and remain on the street as a visual blight.
The naughty people who dispose of fats and oils from cafes and restaurants illegally—some of whom pour them into street drains and tree pits—are also being targeted by the campaign.
Council compliance officers will be on the streets monitoring the campaign and issuing enforcement notices where necessary.
The campaign will have three bursts of activity, starting this month, and again in March and June-July next year.
"The CBD is the heart of Auckland city and the state of our streets leaves a lasting impression on visitors. This is an important time to win the hearts and minds of tourists as well as improve the environment for residents and workers," says Stewart.