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This June, after over a year of planning and analysis, the Downtown Long Beach Alliance (DLBA) put its new pressure washing vehicle to work. The new truck allows DLBA and its partner, Block by Block, to maintain a weekly, five-day sidewalk cleaning schedule with maximum efficiency.

“Pressure washing our Downtown sidewalks is a very fluid and fast process now,” said DLBA Community Outreach Manager Steve Be Cotte, who is largely responsible for the vehicle’s design. During the research and development phase for the project, Steve spoke with business association managers throughout the country and discovered that a “cookie cutter” approach was often being used for sidewalk pressure washing: a small truck pulling a small, trailer-mounted water tank. Based on his research and a cost analysis of DLBA’s existing pressure washing arrangement, he determined that a more cost-effective approach was possible.

Be Cotte enlisted the help of multiple area vendors to design a more efficient rig. The new vehicle is a Ford F-550 truck with a custom flatbed built to hold a 925-gallon water tank. With two pressure washing machines aboard, two Clean Team members can pressure wash the equivalent of half a city block in front of and behind the truck simultaneously as it makes its way through Downtown streets. A third Clean Team member acts as team lead, running the water hoses, putting out safety cones, and alerting the washers to oncoming pedestrians.

“It’s a 100%-custom rig,” said Be Cotte. “It turned out exactly as we had hoped.”

The new truck minimizes tank refill time, allowing the three-person crew to spend all its time keeping Downtown sidewalks clean.

“Sweeping and pressure washing the streets around our businesses creates an environment that is inviting to our customers and helps dramatically improve the appearance of a Downtown business,” said Hasuni Kahwaji, who owns and operates the fitness shop Max Muscle Nutrition at 322 Pine Avenue. “By removing debris from sidewalks and store fronts, pressure washing keeps  our businesses clean, as well as increasing safety and enhancing the overall feeling of security in downtown.”