How can we optimise interventions to maintain cleanliness facilities?

Challenge Identifier: BC7 – 2018 – D
Sponsor cities:  Saint-Quentin, Delft

The city of Saint-Quentin is a middle sized cities of 56.000 inhabitants localized in the region of Hauts-de-France within 90 minutes of Lille, Paris and Brussels. The city defined a digital roadmap based on 3 pillars : ensure the sustainability of the local territory by optimizing its energetic efficiency and by improving  the internal efficiency of public services through automation and robotization (robots for pipe inspection or drones for roof control as example) ; Improving digital inclusiveness and training of citizens ; oster digital transition of the local economy (for example, digitalize cultural heritage and support digital transition of small business).


Public litter bins, ashtrays and dog waste bins provide an important function in keeping cities clean, hygienic and attractive. Unavailable or over-filled bins mean that citizens are inconvenienced, and also encourages littering. This particular aspect is highly visible to citizens, and is frequently a priority issue for them. Consequently this is an area of investment for cities – for example, Saint Quentin is deploying 100 new ashtrays this year. However, current collection timings are based on routine and experience. This leads to wasted time and money as under-filled bins are collected, or over-flowing bins where an event or other extra-ordinary occurrence has taken place.  Therefore, there is a requirement for a solution that enables customized and optimised route scheduling, that allows city staff to decide when and where it is necessary to intervene.

Expected Outcomes

  • Develop tools that will help to optimize and reduce the tours required for the maintenance of existing cleanliness facilities, including monitoring levels, identifying litter spots (particular dog waste bags);
  • Provide a solution that helps survey which cleanliness facilities need a maintenance in order to schedule collection operations and optimize daily tours.
  • Find an innovative way to raise awareness of citizens concerning street cleanliness or incentivize them to use waste facilities.
  • Linked with the citizen reporting system
  • Ongoing determination of whether the public bins are correctly placed and if there are a sufficient number
  • Replicability, interoperability and transferability of the solution

Expected Impacts

  • Better internal efficiency in the maintenance of cleanliness facilities
  • Reduction in time spent by the relevant department
  • Litter facilities are always functional and ready to use
  • Raised public awareness concerning the issue of street cleanliness


Saint Quentin

  • Location of approximately 700 cleanliness facilities
  • Sectoral distribution of team in charge of cleanliness operation
  • Location of green spaces
  • Sensors to monitor prevalent conditions related to the maintenance of cleanliness facilities: percent of filling; problem with the bag distributor for dog poop collection
  • Event calendar (cultural, sport events, etc.)
  • User reports


  • Events calendar
  • Location of green spaces
  • Location of bodies of water
  • Street furniture

Yet to be opened

  • User reports
  • Inspection reports on public spaces
  • Garbage hotspots
  • Number of people in city by date