The objective was to achieve a clean square. “And that’s what we have today,” says a wellsatisfied Kenneth Kempendahl on the city’s installation of six self-emptying litter bins from Envac in June this year.
The objective was to achieve a clean square. “And that’s what we have today,” says a wellsatisfied Kenneth Kempendahl on the city’s installation of six self-emptying litter bins from Envac in June this year. “We can confirm that things have improved greatly. The litter bins have never been over-filled. The litter around the litter bins has also decreased despite us having removed more than half the traditional bins.”
Kenneth is a park engineer who works for Södermalm District Administration in Stockholm. “We received many queries prior to the installation of the system,” Kenneth tells us. Mariatorget is an extremely sensitive environment in the centre of Stockholm and in the centre of a living urban environment. The square borders on Hornsgatan, one of Stockholm’s most frequently used streets with recurrent air quality problems. The objective of installing the self-emptying litter bins was not just to have a cleaner square but also to decrease the number of heavy waste collection vehicles.
The six self-emptying bins on Mariatorget in Stockholm are the first of their kind. They look like the ordinary litter bins used by the city, but they never get over-filled. The litter bins are connected to an underground pipe system which empties into an underground collection container. Each litter bin is equipped with a level gauge which senses how full the litter bins are. When the waste reaches a certain level, the litter bin is automatically emptied when a valve opens and the litter drops down into the pipe system, from where it is sucked to a central container.
“Previously, litter bins were emptied manually twice a day and in some cases up to three times a day. Nowadays a vehicle comes every other week to retrieve the container.” For the city, this means that the number of heavy vehicle movements has been drastically reduced and the emptying costs have decreased. The number of complaints about litter have also decreased.
In the next phase, the surrounding homes and premises will be able to use the underground pipe system for their waste. Inlets will be installed on the pavements. Envac has installed waste inlets in many towns and cities in southern Europe, but this is the first such installation in Stockholm. “It is going to be very exciting,” says Joakim Karlsson, deputy CEO for Envac North Europe. “The experience we have gained from other countries points to this being a highly appreciated solution with reduced noise pollution and better accessibility as a result. ”
Facts about Mariatorget
Project start: 2010
Commissioning: May 2011
Type of system: Litterbin/SVS 400
Area of use: Town centres - public litter bins
Number of fractions: 1
Number of inlets: 6
Length of the pipe network: 180 metres
Type of waste: Residual waste
Current load: Emptied once every other week
Number of users: approx 200/day
Type of control system: Q04
As normal, users throw their litter in the litter bins. The litter bins are directly connected to a horizontal pipe under the ground, and the waste is sucked away to a collection station located underground.