PSTA Invests in Solar Power to Keep Bus Stops Clean!
For nearly a year, the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority has been setting monthly ridership records. Along with that increased ridership comes the side-effect of more trash at bus stops and transfer centers. “It’s been a challenge,” says PSTA Facilities Maintenance Manager Kevin Hoyt. “Keeping the bus stops clean is very important for our riders and for the communities we serve. These innovative compactors are the perfect solution.”
Hoyt is talking about 14 new solar-powered trash compactors that the agency just installed at various locations throughout the county. Manufactured by Big Belly Solar, Inc., the compactors harness the power of information technology and renewable energy to help reduce the need for costly trash pickups. Inside these state-of-the-art, solar-powered trash cans, a sensor keeps track of how full the container is and automatically goes through a compaction cycle when needed. Once the can is full and can no longer be compacted, it sends an email to PSTA’s Facilities Maintenance department telling staff it’s ready to be emptied. This very specific, real time notification means that our crews can pinpoint pickups and make their rounds with greater efficiency.
Officials say that just two of the BigBelly cans at a busy transfer location can take the place of four regular cans and reduce the number of times the can needs to be emptied from once a day to twice a month! And once the cans are paid off, they’ll be saving taxpayers more than $9000 a year per location in maintenance costs.
The BigBelly compactors can be found at PSTA’s facilities at 34th Street, Gateway Mall, Park Street Terminal, 75th Ave & Gulf Way, Clearwater Mall, Grand Central Station, and Ulmerton Rd & 49th St (2 of the 4 corners). Agency officials intend to purchase about 70 more of the compactors over the next few of years and are eagerly looking forward to the added savings.
For more information about PSTA, visit www.PSTA.net or call the PSTA InfoLine at (727) 540-1900.
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The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority is currently conducting a study of the current bus network to help streamline service and maximize resources. This analysis will ensure that Pinellas County residents are getting the most efficient and economically viable transit service possible.
The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority is the public transit provider for Pinellas County, providing more than 13.1 million rides per year. PSTA operates nearly 40 bus and trolley routes with a fleet of 188 vehicles. To learn more about the services offered by PSTA, or for schedule and fare information, passengers are invited to call the PSTA InfoLine at (727) 540-1900, or visit www.PSTA.net. PSTA is an equal opportunity employer.