San Diego Should Use Coronavirus Time to Clean the City

by on April 3, 2020 · 0 comments

in Health, Ocean Beach, San Diego

By Colleen O’Connor

With every crisis comes an opportunity.  This opportunity arrives once in a century.

Forget massive funding needs, scarce special equipment requirements, or rare skill sets.  This coronavirus opportunity is easier to fix. It only requires common sense and some hustle, and it can create “workforce-demand” jobs instantly.

There are very few people or cars clogging the streets and sidewalks.  Take advantage of those near ghost town conditions in our city of more than 1.3 million people. Shelter-in-place, stay-at-home, social distancing; whatever you want to call it is a fabulous opportunity for the City to do work that cannot be efficiently done at any other time.  Use this break wisely.

Use it to clean the City.  It desperately needs it. Singapore did it to great effect.  Why can’t we?

Think maintenance. Clean the city buildings inside and out; the school classrooms; the Park and Rec buildings; public bathrooms; the warehouses, theaters, and even sidewalks.  Think sanitation.

Do a short walk-about in your neighborhood (still allowed) or on your way to work, or to the pharmacy or to buy groceries.

The City’s sidewalks desperately need power washing.  In fact, they need the Hepatitis A-type industrial strength cleaning (using chlorine and bleach) that was done in 2017. The same can be done swiftly now.

Look at the boardwalks along the closed beaches.  Power wash them. Use a street sweeper if necessary.  Look at the filthy sidewalks in Balboa Park; near the Arboretum, the Old Globe theater, alongside the Organ Pavilion.  The entire park area. Power wash those sidewalks.

Take any neighborhood; the shop lined streets along Rosecrans Street in La Playa; Fishing boat landings along the waterfront.  Or in the two highest infected areas in San Diego; La Jolla’s Prospect Street and Park Boulevard in the Hillcrest, Bankers Hill area should be first on the list.

The Barrio.  Downtown. The sidewalks near Gompers High. Clairemont.  Add trolleys, buses, trains, depots and the airport and Coronado ferry.

These and hundreds more sidewalks and park walkways can and should be sanitized now. It only takes some hustle, vision and the same team or program that completed the HepA cleaning near PetCo Park.

Call your Council representative, the Mayor, or the Country Board of Supervisors to give them the names of streets in your area that need serious, overdue cleaning.   Do it now — while it is possible. Don’t squander the opportunity.

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