BetterBin: A next generation litter basket for New York City.


The Competition


How can we create a practical and efficient litter basket for New York City that reduces litter and better serves both Sanitation Workers and the public?

The New York City Department of SanitationVan Alen Institute, and the Industrial Designers Society of America / American Institute of Architects New York, are seeking an interdisciplinary design team to respond to BetterBin, a design competition to reimagine the iconic New York City litter basket.

BetterBin marks the launch of Van Alen Institute’s Product Placed initiative, a new series of design competitions to create innovative civic products that improve urban life.


Up to three finalists will each receive a $40,000 award to produce prototypes that will be tested in New York City neighborhoods.


The Competition is open to the public. Submissions are welcome from the entire design community, including: architects; artists; engineers; landscape architects; planners; urban designers; industrial designers; and manufacturers, etc. Submissions from international competitors, multi-disciplinary teams, and students are welcome. There is no maximum number of team members, but the recommended number is up to 4.

Each Competitor may only submit one Submission, and no individual or firm may be a member of more than one team Submission. Current City of New York employees are not eligible to participate in this Competition.

There is no entry fee.


The deadline has now passed and the competition is closed. All entries will be evaluated and competitors will be notified of their status in November 2018.


What should New York City's next generation litter baskets look like?


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