Kingston wins technology award for Bin Evolution project

A group of 6 Kingston staff, with one in the centre holding the framed MAV Award

An innovative solution for managing our public litter bins has landed Kingston the top gong for Customer Experience at the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) Technology Awards.

The Bin Evolution project involved the development and roll out of a new labelling system for our public bins, with unique QR codes that can be scanned by our residents and visitors to let us know if one needs emptying or fixing, with the notification going straight to our waste contractors for action.

Acting Mayor Jenna Davey-Burns said the need for the Bin Evolution came on the back of the extended Covid lockdown in 2020 and Council’s desire to keep our open spaces tidy and our community informed, safe and active.

“Our unique natural environment meant that during lockdown residents were able to enjoy our parks and foreshore within their 5km radius during vital mental and physical health breaks, with this increased use of open space bringing a spike in overflowing bins,” Cr Davey-Burns said.

“With well over 1000 bins across our foreshore, reserves and shopping villages, our collection program wasn’t keeping up with the heightened demand and an innovative 24/7 solution was required.

“A cross-organisation team took a deep dive into the issue, with the humble QR code identified as a key part of the answer.

“A unique QR code was generated for every individual bin and printed onto stickers with a message encouraging the public to report issues. These QR codes, coupled with a full automation of the reporting process, has produced fantastic results.”

With no more than a smartphone and a passion for keeping Kingston beautiful, customers can scan the QR code and submit the form, the waste contractor is notified directly, and the bin is emptied, with Council being notified once the task has been completed.

As additional recognition, Kingston City Council and Bin Evolution has been nominated for the Linked Organisations of Local Authority (LOLA) Achievement of the Year award, which includes organisations from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Netherlands, USA, UK and Sweden. The 2022 LOLA conference is being held in New Zealand in November.

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