A Week's Recognition for the Work That Never Stops

Published on May 17, 2016

It's National Public Works Week but to keep things running in Arlington, you need a year-round, 24/7 effort.

Drinking water, trash, public transit, the sewers, streets and sidewalks rarely take a holiday. Even County buildings need someone to maintain them, and it's hard to vacuum or paint during regular business hours.

Just some of what the Department of Environmental Services has done over the past year:

  • Collected some 34,000 tons of trash and another 31,000 tons of recycling curbside

  • Carried more than 2.8 million passengers on Arlington Transit (ART) bus trips

  • Paved 92 of the County's 974 lane miles

  • Filled 12,100 potholes in 2015, and 4,917 so far in 2016

  • Cleaned and lined 57,000 linear feet of storm sewer pipe

  • Fixed 217 water main breaks

  • Replaced approximately three miles of water mains

  • Cleaned and lined 2,300 linear feet of water mains

  • Collected more than 2,300 tons of debris and sediment through street sweeping


"Every time you leave collection bins at the curb, pause for the crosswalk light or run the tap to brush your teeth, you're interacting with the County's Department of Environmental Services," County Manager Mark Schwartz says.

"Sometimes the best work is the work you don't notice," Schwartz adds. "In Arlington we're fortunate to have such dedicated, skillful men and women supporting our vital infrastructure."

National Public Works Week ends Saturday but Arlington's Environmental Services will always be on the job.