Friday, June 19, 2009

Free Curbside Recycling Coming To Kirkwood Residents

Kirkwood is making plans to provide citywide single-stream curbside recycling in fall 2010, thanks in part to a mandate by St. Louis County. The service would be offered at no additional charge to residents.

Under the plan, the city, through its sanitation department, would offer once a week curbside recycling. To do that, one of the changes Kirkwood will make is going from twice a week curbside household waste pickup to once a week household waste pickup.

While many details remain to be worked out, the service is expected to include some or all of the following:

> The city will establish five sanitation districts. Recyclables will be picked up once per week on the same day as regular household waste.

>> Roll-out containers will be provided without charge to each single-family home. The city will apply for grant money from the St. Louis County Health Department and the St. Louis-Jefferson Solid Waste Management District to fund the containers.

>> Regular household waste will continue to be picked up in plastic bags. One roll of 50 bags will continue to be provided and delivered at no charge each year by the city, with additional bags available for purchase at Kirkwood City Hall.

>> There will be no change in the requirement that residents place yard waste in paper bags purchased from the city or in tied bundles.

>> Bulky pick-up will be provided on the day of household waste pick-up on a fee-for-service basis.

>> Businesses in the city will be able and encouraged to recycle.

>> Apartment complexes will continue to use dumpsters and will be encouraged to add a second dumpster for recyclables.

>> The process of converting to curbside recycling could take one year or longer and will include modification of some existing trucks as well as purchase of new ones.

Under St. Louis County ordinance, a municipality that has a sanitation department must show that 40 percent of its household waste is being recycled. If that diversion rate drops below 40 percent, cities must go to curbside recycling.

"More importantly, its (curbside recycling) time has come," Brown said. "Kirkwood sees itself as an environmentally-conscious community and we've been in the background in curbside recycling."

The city plans to host a couple of open forums over the next six months to give residents a chance to offer input.

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