New Recycling Carts Coming!

A change to Arlington recycling is coming soon as new wheeled recycling carts will begin arriving at south Arlington homes on May 20.

Using the 65-gallon carts will be the sole way that residents can take part in the city’s curbside recycling program. Residents should begin using the new carts as soon as they receive them.

City officials said the carts will be dispersed in the southern part of the city first and would continue north throughout June. The new carts will be dropped off along the street at the curb.

The carts are for recycled material only and not for trash, city officials cautioned. There will be no change in the current method of trash collection; it will still be collected twice a week in disposable trash bags.

Once the new recycling carts arrive, they will replace the green, open-topped bins currently in use. Officials said residents may keep their old recycling bins or place broken or damaged ones inside the new carts to be recycled.

The move to automated recycling was approved by the City Council last summer to improve efficiency in citywide recycling, to increase participation and to conserve landfill capacity. The carts will be serviced using trucks with robotic arms that lift and dump the containers into the truck.

Arlington officials said the carts have lids to help cities nationwide keep items such as paper, plastic bottles and bags from being blown into yards, streets and waterways.

“The carts will provide more capacity and will keep recycled items better contained,” said Lorrie Anderle, the city’s recycling coordinator.

Three thousand households in seven Arlington neighborhoods participated in a pilot program last year. It showed an increase in recyclables and in the number of households that recycled.

A survey of roughly half of those households reported that 74 percent preferred carts over bins.

The infrastructure for automated recycling was developed this spring. New trucks were ordered, and employees were trained how to operate them.

To implement the program, monthly water bills will increase by 94 cents. The rate increase will go into effect once the automated program begins, officials said.

Residents that do not want their cart should call 817-317-2000. However, bins will no longer be serviced.

Residents who are unable to move their recycling to the curb could be eligible to have it collected door-side. There must be no other residents in the home physically able to move the recycling to the curb, and documentation such as a signed physician’s note or permanent handicap placard must be provided.

For more information about door-side pick-up or for more details about the new automated program, visit here.