Watch This Fascinating Short Film About Roosevelt Island’s Vacuum Garbage Collection System

05/24/2010 11:31 AM |

Roosevelt Island vacuum trash system

Unbeknownst to most off-islanders, Roosevelt Island, that little sliver of land between Manhattan and Queens that has a beautiful hospital ruin, a tram (currently closed for renovations), great views, and seemingly not much else of note, has the only residential vacuum garbage collection system in the country. What does that mean? Well: no garbage trucks waking you up in the middle of the night; no stinky, unsightly piles of garbage blocking the sidewalk and attracting rats; but also no sending large items (like phone books!) down the garbage chute, as they have to fit down a vacuum pipe 20-inches in diameter before being separated, compacted and shipped out. All is explained in Greg Whitmore’s illuminating short documentary Nature Abhors a Vacuum, after the jump.