Residents worry about Raleigh leaf collection as holiday events get closer

Wednesday, December 11, 2019
Raleigh leaf battle
Raleigh leaf battle

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Piles of leaves have some residents in Raleigh's Brentwood neighborhood worrying their holiday event could be impacted.

Thousands of candles light up the community on Christmas Eve for their Luminaria Project.

"How long is it going to take us to shovel up?" asked resident Suzanne Healy. "You shovel it down. You blow it. You rake it and everything. Then you wait because they said wait."

The city said the leaf pickup in Brentwood is scheduled for before the Luminaria Project.

But Healy is concerned rain may cause delays and they may not get picked up in time.

In historic Oakwood, residents asked the city to move up their leaf collection before the 48th Annual Historic Oakwood Candlelight Tour this weekend.

"We have 4,000 people," said Matthew Brown, who is involved with the tour. "Some of them are elderly. We were just afraid that someone might slip and fall."

Now, the sidewalks are clean for this event, which dates back to the 1970s.

"They tour the interiors of 12 historic houses and the neighborhood's beautifully decorated and the houses are decorated and there are performers," Brown said.

Raleigh's website lists days you can put your leaves on the curb in your neighborhood.

They actually get picked up about a week later. The city said they are on schedule and are considering designing the schedule to account for special events next year. Last year, they collected 19.977 tons of leaves.

If you can't wait for your designated leaf pickup time slot, you can also put your leaves in biodegradable bags near your trash cans and the city will pick them up as part of your normal trash collection.

Rain can cause delays.

The city will give you a pack of five bags. You can pick them up at city hall.

Healy is hoping the Luminaria Project will go on as planned, as it has the 1960s.

"Everyone comes out," Healy said. "Everybody sings Christmas carols."

The city said they're working to help make sure both events go off as smoothly as possible.