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Chester's new foot pedal operated bin could be a winner

Prototype Bigbelly bin developed in response to hygiene criticisms about existing type

 

Many people hate having to touch the handle of the high tech Bigbelly bins in Chester city centre but now help may be at hand (or more accurately at foot).

The public reacted with disdain when Cheshire West and Chester Council recently boasted the bins had reduced the number of waste collections because of built-in crushers that mean the bins can hold more rubbish.

Chronicle reader Holly Sinclair echoed the sentiments of many when she wrote: “Having to touch the handle is vile and such an unnecessary thing when it could easily just be an opening.”

Bigbelly bins are more efficient for cash-strapped local authorities but members of the public say they don't like using them because you have to touch the handle - which is why a foot pedal operated version is being trialled.

CWaC put the comments to the supplier who quickly came up with a foot pedal operated version which is being trialled in Town Hall Square alongside the original type.

However, The Chronicle observed people still using the handle presumably because the bin, which looks almost identical to the rest, is the only foot pedal operated one in the entire city.

Bigbelly bins, which were introduced to Chester city centre in 2015, hold more waste because of an in-built compactor powered by a battery charged by a solar panel in the lid.

The 60 smart bins, which replaced the previous 77 litter bins across the city centre and at The Groves, inform the council waste department electronically when nearly full.

Bigbelly bins are more efficient for cash-strapped local authorities but members of the public say they don't like using them because you have to touch the handle - which is why a foot pedal operated version is being trialled.

Capacity of each unit is increased almost six fold compared with a conventional bin, from 120 litres to 700 litres.

CWaC leases the bins in an initiative supported by the CH1 Business Improvement District (BID) company with annual leasing costs of £68,640 for the 60 bins or £22 per unit per week when first introduced.

But Bigbelly claims each unit has been proven to return an average £77 per week in savings and efficiencies.

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