NYC Department of Sanitation Launches Grant Application to Improve Waste Collection and Public Space

April 6, 2022

4 Min Read
This photo was taken prior to COVID-19.

The New York City Department of Sanitation, in partnership with the Department of Small Business Services, today launched grant applications for business and community groups seeking to pioneer innovative waste management initiatives in the five boroughs. At least five grants of up to $20,000 will be made available to Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) and community-based development organizations (CBDOs) for projects that help improve waste management operations and street cleanliness in business districts.

Sample projects could include new litter baskets, compactors, enclosures, containers, organics collection, and other waste management equipment and infrastructure. Rooted in the Department of Sanitation’s commitment to equitable waste management, the goals of this project include increasing waste diversion, and reducing vehicle miles traveled and greenhouse gas emissions associated with waste collection.

“New York is a city of constant innovation,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “These grant applications will channel fresh thinking towards how we can best containerize waste across the five boroughs. We’re excited to invest in and test new strategies to manage the city’s waste and expand on what works. By involving our Business Improvement Districts and community-based development organizations, we’re also welcoming New Yorkers into the process of making our streets more inviting. I encourage anyone with ideas to creatively containerize and revitalize our streets to consider applying.”

“As part of our mission to keep streets clean and safe in every neighborhood across the five boroughs, New York’s Strongest are seeking to innovate and reimagine refuse pickup in ways that improve the public realm and create more vibrant commercial districts,” said Edward Grayson, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Sanitation. “With the help of community-based partners in the business and non-profit sectors, we can reduce the presence of refuse on our sidewalks and make our streets more inviting for all who use them.”

 “SBS is excited to work with DSNY and our many non-profit partners to identify creative solutions to beautify our neighborhoods and accelerate our city’s economic recovery,” said Kevin D. Kim, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Small Business Services. “Dynamic and active BIDs and community organizations are essential to the success of local small businesses. SBS is proud to help fund these grants which will help push for innovation and help clean up our business corridors.”

The submission must include a Submission Portfolio that describes the proposed project, the planned implementation timeline, how it would improve waste management in the business district, proposed location(s) or service area(s), and how the BID/CBDO would evaluate the success of the pilot. The BID/CBDO must identify a staff member who will be responsible for overseeing the project. In addition, an itemized breakdown of requested grant funding is required, and the portfolio must include a demonstration of need.


Proposals will be reviewed by representatives from DSNY and SBS, which will rate all responsive submissions based on the following criteria:


  • Potential to improve waste management practices, cleanliness, and/or quality of life

  • Demonstration of need and/or equity

  • Capacity to execute on the project


If a grantee is interested to expand, continue or otherwise improve their project, there will be opportunity to receive a second round of grant funding, up to an additional $20,000. This additional funding is made available through SBS's Neighborhood Challenge program to help spur innovative thinking and catalytic projects from local organizations that generate impact for their commercial districts. Receipt of this funding would be dependent on the success of the initial pilot, as measured by the evaluation proposed in the Submission Portfolio. In the case where a pilot project is unsuccessful, additional funding would be dependent on improvements proposed by the grantee that DSNY and SBS determine to increase the likelihood of success.

For complete application details, see here.

Applications and inquiries should be sent to [email protected]. The application deadline is April 22 at 4 p.m. Winners will be selected by May 20, 2022, and all funds will be disbursed no later than June 30, 2022.

About the New York City Department of Sanitation

The Department of Sanitation (DSNY) keeps New York City healthy, safe and clean by collecting, recycling and disposing of waste, cleaning streets and vacant lots, and clearing snow and ice. The Department operates 59 district garages and manages a fleet of more than 2,000 rear-loading collection trucks, 450 mechanical brooms and 705 salt spreaders. The Department clears litter, snow and ice from approximately 6,500 miles of City streets and removes debris from vacant lots as well as abandoned vehicles from City streets.


About the NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS)

SBS helps unlock economic potential and create economic security for all New Yorkers by connecting New Yorkers to good jobs, creating stronger businesses, and building vibrant neighborhoods across the five boroughs. For more information on all SBS services, go to, call 311, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


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