Administration FAQ

How can I get in touch with someone to ask a question or make a complaint?

For assistance related to any of Public Works' program areas, please visit our Request a Service or Report an Issue features.  Or, visit the Administration Division Contact page to reach one of our staff members directly.

What are Public Works' address and office hours?

Public Works is located at 147 Hampshire Street, Cambridge, MA 02139.

Hours of operation are:

Monday 8:30 am - 8:00 pm
Tuesday - Thursday 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Friday 8:30 am - noon

The Recycling Center is located at 147 Hampshire Street in the back right corner of the Public Works' yard.  The Recycling Center is open: Tuesdays & Thursdays:  4:00pm - 7:30pm and Saturdays:  9:00am - 4:00pm. The Recycling Center is closed to the public at all other times.

What kind of items does Public Works sell to the public?

Members of the community can purchase a number of items from Public Works, including appliance disposal stickers, commemorative and client street trees, photocopies of maps and other documents, and permits.  Visit our pricing page for details.


Which of Public Works’ services can I pay for online?

Effective July 1, 2012: 


Large Item/ Appliance pick up can be scheduled and paid for online. 


The following permit applications can be submitted and paid for online: crane/ boom/ pump truck, excavation, sidewalk closure, and park.

How can I pay for online transactions?

You can pay online by credit card (Discover, MasterCard, Visa), debit card (MasterCard or Visa) and electronic check (“E-check”).  Convenience fees will apply to all credit card, debit card and E-check payments whether in-person or online.


How can I pay for in-person transactions?

You can pay for transaction in person during our office hours by cash, check, credit card (Discover, MasterCard, Visa) and debit card (MasterCard or Visa).

Effective July 1, 2012, convenience fees will apply to all credit card, debit card and E-check payments whether in-person or online.


Why does the City charge convenience fees for credit card and E-check payments?

Every time a customer pays by credit card or E-check, the City is charged a processing fee.  The cost of these fees has been growing over the years with the increase in credit card use.  The City administration decided in fiscal year 2012 to implement convenience fees to refrain from passing along these costs to taxpayers.

What does the convenience fee cover?

The City does not receive any revenue from convenience fees.   Convenience fees are assessed by our third party processor for the handling, bank processing, transaction fees and secure delivery of online payments

How can I avoid convenience fees?

There is no convenience fee for payments made by cash or check.

Are the City's convenience fees comparable with other cities and towns?

All municipalities are paying approximately the same costs for convenience fees per transaction. Municipalities cannot legally absorb the cost for credit and debit card transactions for online payments for real estate and personal property taxes. The fees associated with other payments are comparable with those of other communities.

How can vendors or contractors do business with Public Works?

Public Works conforms to all state and local procurement laws and regulations.  For information on how you can become a vendor or contractor who does business with the City, and for current bidding opportunities, please visit the Purchasing Department website.

How can I find out about jobs at Public Works?

All jobs available at Public Works are posted by the City's Personnel Department.  The majority of positions at Public Works are subject to civil service rules and  regulations.  Generally our positions are classified as follows:  Labor Service, Official Service, and non civil service positions (both permanent and temporary).

What is Public Works' organizational structure?

Operating under the Commissioner, Public Works is organized into three major units: AdministrationEngineering and Operations.

Within these units are 13 Divisions: Administration, Business Services, Engineering, Street and Sewer Maintenance, Snow and Ice, Solid Waste, Parks and Urban Forestry, CemeteryBuildings (Operations, Maintenance, and Administration), Vehicle Maintenance and Off-Hours.

What are the Administration Division's responsibilities?

The Administration Division is responsible for policy development, labor relations, human resources, training and career development, budgeting, fiscal administration, payroll, community relations and information systems.  Division staff provide administrative and IT support to all divisions at Public Works in order to improve their responsiveness to community needs.

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Dept of Public Works

147 Hampshire St
Cambridge MA 02139


Hours of Service

Monday: 8:30am-8pm
Tuesday-Thursday: 8:30am-5pm
Friday: 8:30am-12pm
24 hour emergency
telephone 617.349.4862