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Adopt-a-MARTA Bus Stop Near You

Fewer than 15% of Tucker’s MARTA bus stops are regularly maintained.

If you’ve never noticed the line of litter along Lawrenceville Highway at the bend with Hugh Howell road, you’re not paying attention. Or you’re living under the railway bridge. But that’s a different story.

That strip of roadway by the MARTA bus stop has been an on-going eye-sore for years now, with people pointing fingers trying to figure out who’s responsible for picking up the garbage.

Tucker Civic Association’s Parks and Green Space co-chair, Beth White Ganga, decided to do something about it, and, along with her fellow green space committee members, has managed to pick up 550 pounds of trash and recycling over the past six months since adopting the bus stop.

But the garbage keeps coming.

“This particular location has so much trash because it is located right between four fast-food restaurants,” said Ganga, “The recent addition of a trash can has helped the litter problem, but unfortunately some people still choose to throw their trash on the ground instead of in the trash can.”

One big problem? Most bus stops have no trash cans. There are 4,642 bus stops in DeKalb and the county can’t handle the demand.

“Marta doesn’t have the money to get it done, they can only take care of the stops with benches and shelters,” said Laurene Hamilton, Coodinator of Keep DeKalb Beautiful. “The majority of stops in DeKalb are stand-alone but riders can’t bring items on the bus. The way to combat that is to have something so they can dispose of garbage properly.”

That’s where you come in.

“People get disgusted of the conditions at bus stops,” said Marvin Toliver, Community Relations Manager for MARTA. “Cans are not at every stop. It’s up to private property owners, community groups, stewardship. Education and appreciation effects the quality of life and overall environment we live in. Getting involved makes a tremendous difference. We know that at MARTA.”

Of the 159 MARTA bus stops in Tucker, only three have been adopted. One by , and two others by .

“The strength in the {adopt-a-MARTA stop} program is having it as litter-free as possible,” explains Hamilton, “If it looks neglect it will be neglected. By Beth and TCA putting forth the effort, it looks better and gives a better image for the county and the MARTA program as a whole.”

“Each month… we pick up trash and recycling, prune the vines and shrubbery away from the sidewalk, and keep the curb free of weeds,” Ganga said. “The community response has been very positive. At each of our clean-ups, people regularly stop by and tell us they appreciate what we're doing and the bus drivers usually get off the bus and come thank us. I never thought I would say this, but picking up trash is actually fun!”

One bus driver mentioned he can’t be interviewed but did go on record saying, “they’re doing a great job here.”

Doraville resident Mike James uses this specific bus stop once every two weeks to shop at and appreciates the effort saying, “it’s good they’re emptying it more. Somebody’s gotta do it.”

If you're interested in adopting a MARTA bus stop, contact Keep DeKalb Beautiful at kdb@dekalbcountyga.gov or call 404-371-2654.

Ben August 31, 2012 at 01:11 PM
They use to maintain them, i worked there as a Bus Operater about 33 Years ago, They were Maintained then, this is a big JOKE, What about all the money from the Sales Tax and Federal Money they get, MARTA Wastes alot of money, waste was big back then and still is.
Terry Funderburke August 31, 2012 at 03:32 PM
You may want to consult your attorney. If it is not your property you may be liable for anything you do or anything that results from what you do. Your homeowners insurance may not indemnify you if you are trespassing or on someone else’s property without their explicit permission. Rights of Way belong to the property owner with another entity having a rite of passage or use. “Public Access”, ask your attorney for a definition.
beth September 01, 2012 at 12:51 AM
Hi Terry, Thanks for your concern. The "Adopt-a-MARTA-Bus Stop" program is run by DeKalb County Government (Keep DeKalb Beautiful is part of the Sanitation Division). As fully sanctioned and registered volunteers with the county, there should be no legal issues with us cleaning up the right-of-way. Actually, Adopt-a-MARTA-Bus Stop is only one of several right-of-way cleanup programs run by the county. Others include "Adopt-a-Road", "Clean it to the Curb" and the "Great American Cleanup". For more information please go to www.keepdekalbbeautiful.org. Thanks, Beth White Ganga

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