Copenhagen dirty, say tourists

Empty bins and full streets - summer tourists have enough of Copenhagen's grit and grime

The mess of broken bottles, greasy pizza boxes and crushed cans lying on city streets is so bad this year that tourists have registered complaints with Wonderful Copenhagen tourist organisation.

'If tourists spread the impression in their home countries that Copenhagen is a dirty city, it impacts our tourism industry negatively,' Camilla Kjærsgaard of Wonderful Copenhagen told daily newspaper Berlingske Tidende.

'There are simply too many people who aren't raised well,' said Klaus Bondam, deputy mayor for environmental affairs in Copenhagen. 'I just can't understand that people throw they garbage on the streets.'

'Among other places Nyhavn has been highlighted in the complaints we've received,' said Kjærsgaard. 'Mostly we receive more general complaints and not with specific areas pointed out.'

Kjærsgaard said this is the first summer that the tourism organisation has received complaints about littered streets from tourists.

The complaints have awoken political concerns with the Liberal Party at Town Hall. Jesper Schou Hansen, a member of the engineering and environmental board, criticised Bondam for not allocating enough money to street sweepers in the face of renovations this summer.

'Street sweepers are doing what they can but they don't have enough resources for the maintenance,' said Hansen.

Bondam acknowledged the lack of funds to maintenance crews and is encouraging members from all parties to vote in support of increasing funding allocated to street maintenance when the parties negotiate a budget for 2007 this fall.

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