The City’s new wheeled recycling carts began being delivered this week to south Arlington homes at a rate of about 5,000 per day, ushering in the citywide switch away from the current open-top bins.
Arlington officials said that while the wheeled carts will be easy and more convenient to use, residents do have a few things to learn about the new method of placing their recycled goods at the curb.
The main thing to remember, said Lorrie Anderle, the city’s recycling coordinator, is that the wheeled carts need plenty of space around them.
“Leaning trash bags against the carts or not leaving the proper distance between the cart and mailboxes, vehicles and trees is the main concern,” she said.
The new automated trucks need plenty of room to pick up the 65-gallon carts. The robotic arm that lifts the carts overhead could accidentally snag trash bags placed too close, slinging trash into the street.
The carts should be placed three feet away from trash bags, mailboxes and trees and five feet away from vehicles. There should be 16 feet of clearance above the carts as well.
The wheeled carts are expected to be completely delivered citywide by the end of June. The City Council approved the move to automated recycling last summer as a way to keep paper, plastic bottles and bags from being blown into yards, streets and waterways, and to increase recycling participation.
When residents receive their carts, they should begin using them. Officials said residents may keep their old recycling bins or place broken or damaged ones inside the new carts to be recycled.
Residents who do not want their new cart should call 817-317-2000. Bins will no longer be serviced.
The new carts are for recycling only, and the change doesn’t affect the current method of trash collection using disposable trash bags.
When wheeling the cart to the curb, residents should make sure the lid is closed and grab the handle with both hands. Place one foot on the axle and carefully tilt the cart. Push or pull the cart to roll it.
On hills, push the cart when going downhill and pull the cart when going uphill. The cart should always be on the downhill side of you. Place the cart with the front facing the street.
Residents who are unable to move carts to the curb could be eligible for door-side collection. There must be no other residents in the home physically able to move the recycling. A signed physician’s note or permanent handicap placard must be provided.
The new 65-gallon carts hold more than the 22-gallon traditional green bins residents have been using.
With the larger carts also comes opportunity to recycle an expanded list of items. Anderle said pizza boxes, juice containers, pots and pans, aluminum foil and empty aerosol cans now will be accepted.
For more details about the new automated program, click here.