Memphis it's Free: Go to the DUMP!
Local & National News | January 29, 2024
Written By: Joe B. Kent | Massive curbside trash is everywhere, throughout the city, to include traditionally, well kept, areas like East Memphis.

Embarrassed for riders to see the inside of my truck, I am messy in my personal space, but not in public. So what’s with all the curbside trash? At our house, we don’t leave couches on the side of the road for pickup; we pay to go to the dump. But really, residents don’t have to pay in Memphis. More on that later.

Meanwhile, massive curbside trash is everywhere, throughout the city, including traditionally, well kept, areas like East Memphis. The above picture was taken on Central, across the street from the University of Memphis. Go to the dump people!

I have lived in various parts of the Southeast but never have I seen so much curbside trash. And the City can’t afford to pick up all this trash. Residents MUST go to the dump. Recently in Nashville, with my daughter, we had to make a paid dump run, after cleaning out her garage. Neither of us ever considered stacking up household debris on the side of the road. Nor would Nashville allow it.

The two snapshots below were taken in East Memphis Sea Isle neighborhood. One is just household furniture piled up, while the other is a chest placed on a corner as if on display to be given away. Both, which have become more common, have simple remedies. The picture on the left, in Memphis unlike Nashville, is a free dump run and the chest is a trip to a local charity.

The next picture, near Getwell and Willow, appears to represent a whole other problem with an apartment landlord who apparently has abandoned their waste management contract.

All of this brings us to a solution; better code enforcement with the apartment landlord and City of Memphis residents taking advantage of a free dump run, which is far from a universal municipal public offering, across the country. The City of Memphis Solid Waste website says:

“For your convenience, Solid Waste Fee paying customers can take up to one truckload of non-hazardous waste to the landfill each month. Click here to find the closest landfill to you. Make sure to have your latest MLGW bill and picture I.D. with you.”

The City defines a truckload as a pickup truckload. Anything outside the trash cart, larger than waist high, deep and wide (18” or ½ cubic yard) is excessive for curbside pickup. But it appears that the City, at times, picks larger loads up anyway.

All that to say, Memphis will be a cleaner city, with much more manageable solid waste costs, if residents will read and abide by the following solid waste regulations found here and here.

This is not big ask, with the City accommodating free dump runs. So GO TO THE DUMP PEOPLE! And we all win with a cleaner city.

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Merge Memphis

Housing Refuge for Home In-secured women in our community.


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