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Some Wake Forest Residents Left With Trashy Problem

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WAKE FOREST, N.C. — Wake Forest recently ran out of garbage cans for its residents. Garbage is piling up in some neighborhoods, but there may be some relief in sight.

Bonnie Bates has been buried in boxes since moving to Wake Forest last week. All the unpacking has created tons of trash, but Bates has nowhere to put it.

"I went down to sign up for trash, and the woman said, 'We don't have any more trash barrels,' and I said, 'What do I do with my trash?'" said Bates. "And she said, 'I don't know.'"

If residents don't have a town-issued trash can, they won't get their trash picked up by garbage crews. Because of that, Bates made three trips to the city dump with carloads of trash.

Bates is one of three people on just one street waiting for a garbage can. Town officials are blaming a building boom for the shortage.

Wake Forest has experienced steady growth over the past six years. This year, it's on track to surpass last year's permits for single-family homes. Last year, just over 1,000 new homes were built in Wake Forest. More than 500 were built in the first seven months of 2006.

Back in the 1980s, only a few thousand people called Wake Forest home. Now, 20,000 people live there.

"I was born and raised in this town, and never thought I would see as many people around here as you can now," said Reggie Forte with the Wake Forest Public Works Department.

Fortunately, more than 500 new garbage cans rolled into town on Wednesday. Workers spent the whole day assembling them, and they will start delivering them to new homeowners Thursday morning.

Bates can't wait. Her days going to the dump will be over, and she and others will soon have a barrel to call their own.

"I'm going to miss the man at the dump," said Bates. "He's so nice. 'Oh, you are back again?'"

The town received 530 garbage cans and more than 400 recycling bins. Wake Forest officials said they will only last for a couple a months, due to the town's growth.


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