Orange is the new green
Stadtentsorgung Potsdam successful in garden maintenance with innovative technology
12. December 2018
Orange is the colour of Stadtentsorgung Potsdam GmbH (STEP). The employees of STEP wear orange workwear. The fleet is orange, and the colour also stands out on the company's websites. The company with 320 employees has successfully established itself in garden maintenance as an environmentally friendly service provider for the municipality, housing companies, as well as commercial and private clients. "Hence, orange is the new green", says Marco Zielinski. He manages the Cleaning / Winter Maintenance / Garden Maintenance Division at STEP, where 100 employees work.
The state capital of Brandenburg has 175,000 inhabitants and is well-known in Germany for its palaces and parks, as well as museums. Thousands of tourists flock to Potsdam every year. There are many well-attended special events such as music and park festivals. STEP ensures that guests of the city obtain a good impression. It is a 51% subsidiary of Stadtwerke Potsdam GmbH, which was founded in 1991. 49 percent of the shares are owned by the REMONDIS Group, a major German recycling company.
Hence, orange is the new greenMarco Zielinski
Faster, cleaner, quieter
The horticultural engineer Marco Zielinski stresses that with an increasing number of inhabitants in the state capital the expectations of STEP are also growing. "Faster, cleaner and quieter", using innovative green technology. The city councillors also have to make corresponding decisions. "STEP can already fulfil the request for cleanliness, innovation and environmental friendliness today. This is recognised by the people in Potsdam and increasingly appreciated", says Zielinski.
STEP pays particular attention to the main railway station and the street Brandenburgische Straße, a centrally located promenade. "These areas must be managed intensively, otherwise they quickly go to rack and ruin", says the expert. Disposable packaging is also one of the challenges that STEP employees have to deal with. Although in Potsdam more and more reusable coffee cups are being sold, quite a few disposable cups end up in the bin. "We now have bins with solar-powered pressing facilities at known areas were a particularly large number of cups are thrown away", says Marco Zielinski. "When the bin is full, the hatch is closed and the coffee cups are pressed into pieces of paper." In the past many waste bins were emptied four times a day. Today they only need to be emptied once a week.
For keeping the city clean in an environmentally friendly way STEP benefits from its modern, carefully compiled fleet. Cooperation with experienced and reliable manufacturers who provide sound products which they produce in series where possible is important. "When selecting manufacturers we focus on quality at a reasonable price", says Zielinski. "The equipment must fulfil high requirements of durability and functionality. It is not the purchase price that is decisive, but the economy that is guaranteed by a long product life cycle. The equipment must also meet the different requirements placed on the Potsdam-based service provider.
The Holder C 250
"With the multifunctional implement carrier C 250 from Holder we mow lawns and use boom mowers for mowing verges and embankments", adds Zielinski. "We pick up foliage and also use the vehicle for winter maintenance." In autumn between 20 and 60 tons of leaves fall in Potsdam every day. It is almost impossible to dispose of this amount by hand. The STEP employees also use the C 250 from Holder for the continuous waste disposal, which can suck in up to 1.2 cubic metres by means of a special sweeper for foliage. The Holder vehicles in the C series used in Potsdam have a mechanical PTO shaft at the front as well as other standard interfaces at the back and on the vehicle. The certified attachments for mowing, cleaning and clearing can be fitted here easily and quickly. There is also the innovative drive concept: The implement carriers are controlled with a hydrostatic drive and inch pedal. The power is transferred optimally to traction and equipment drive.
Multifunctionality, payload and articulated steering
From Marco Zielinski's viewpoint, the articulated steering, among other things, is representative of Holder: "With the articulated steering we manage tighter corners." Holder articulated machines can be managed effectively and safely through the city.
"The combination of multifunctionality, articulated steering and payload appeals to our customers", confirms Michael Baumgarten. "This is a unique selling point of Holder." Baumgarten is a sales assistant at the Garten-Technik-Zentrum Berlin-Brandenburg (GARTEC). The company sells Holder vehicles and provides a comprehensive service. "When a customer buys a Holder with certified attachments, then he know that the machine is harmonious", says Michael Baumgarten.
Since 2016 Stadtentsorgung Potsdam has been working with the municipal dealer GARTEC, "as partners and to our full satisfaction", as both Michael Baumgarten and Marco Zielinski highlight. The STEP employees gladly avail themselves of the expert support of GARTEC in inspections, maintenance work and the procurement of spare parts. GARTEC employee Baumgarten discusses the latest trends with his customer and makes available vehicles and equipment on-site for comprehensive tests.
In addition to the articulated machines, for a few years now Holder's portfolio also has the MUVO, a transporter with 4-wheel steering. "The extension of the range of vehicles has helped improve the significance of the Holder brand", reasons Marco Zielinski.
Low emissions and quiet
The sales assistant Michael Baumgarten observed that more and more customers are enquiring specifically about environmentally friendly technology, not only the staff at STEP. Many people want to purchase low-emission equipment. The Holder name often comes into play. Max Holder GmbH focuses on future-oriented products that protect the environment as much as possible and thus meet the increasing requirements of customers. The vehicles of the Holder brand are on the one hand robust, and on the other hand they work quietly with low emissions and a relatively low weight. As regards particulate matter, the company now offers a clean solution with the X 45i model, which is petrol-operated. Customers can get to know the machine and take it for a test drive at GARTEC. "We are satisfied with the demand for this product", says Michael Baumgarten. Holder already produces vehicles in series which comply with the requirements of the Stage V Ready and Euro 6 standards. Holder is also working on the development of electric vehicles.
Flexible handling with demand Peaks
In the cold season Stadtentsorgung Potsdam needs more vehicles to keep the roads and paths clear of snow and ice. STEP uses Holder's offer to rent or lease vehicles for a limited period and is also looked after here by Michael Baumgarten from GARTEC. Zielinski can put together a fleet that meets the precisely calculated need, which in turn contributes to the economy and efficiency of STEP.
In Potsdam 12 multifunctional MUVO municipal transporters from Holder are used in winter. They are equipped with a front sweeper as well as a roller spreader. The employees of STEP clear pavements and cycle routes with the narrow MUVOs. They are in good condition all year round. This is important because cyclists have a strong lobby.