Residents and visitors may have noticed that the streets of Isla Vista are unusually clean for this time of year.
Normally, a walk down Del Playa Drive the week after graduation would be constricted by the piles of trash and discarded household items spilling out into the street from the houses of students who have gone elsewhere for the summer. But due to increased collaborative efforts by the County Public Works Department, Marborg Industries, the Isla Vista Recreation and Parks District (IVRPD), public safety officers, and UCSB, less trash is being allowed to accumulate than in years past.
“This year has been the quickest cleanup by about half,” said Bennett Williams, who works for IVRPD. “Marborg has been sending out up to three extra trucks per day, even working on Fathers’ Day, to ensure they stay ahead of the trash pileup.”
Marborg Vice President David Borgatello said that as of Tuesday, June 17, the company had collected 18 compacted loads of trash, totaling 118 tons. Garbage trucks will be patrolling I.V.’s streets until June 27. “We’re recycling everything possible at our yard,” he said. As for the messy piles of refuse spread around I.V.’s many dumpsters, Borgatello said people searching for recyclables and salvageable items are to blame. “They dig in the bins and scatter stuff all over the ground,” he said.
One man, who wished to remain anonymous, said he has collected a large quantity of salvageable items from around the trash bins, and plans to resell them.
The Moveout Cleanup Program, run by the County Public Works Department, has been around for the past 15 years, but has been more successful recently thanks to cooperation from the Great Isla Vista Extravaganza (GIVE) project, a volunteer-run weekend sale that recycles discarded furniture, clothing, and usable household appliances found in trash bins around I.V. at the end of the school year.
GIVE Project Director Catherine Boyer said the sale enables community members to donate volunteer hours to local charities, such as the Isla Vista Teen Center, and the amount of hours they work is factored into the amount of money made by salvaged items picked up in I.V. during the move out. All of the proceeds go to area charities, and the items that are not sold will be donated to the Santa Barbara chapter of Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Boyer said.