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City Will Roll Out New Carts and New Trash System this Fall

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New and Improved Service - What It Means to You! 

In 2010, Kirkwood Sanitation launched a new era in trash collection when recycling carts were delivered to all households in the City.  The carts allowed residents to recycle at the curb, with curbside recycling, while providing a convenient way to store recyclables until collection day.

This Fall, the next era in Kirkwood trash collection will roll out when the City delivers new trash carts to all households.  Instead of carrying heavy bags to the curb, residents will now be able to place trash bags in a cart, tilt it back slightly, and roll it with ease down to the street.

These new carts will be easy for residents to push, but they will also improve efficiency and worker safety.  With the current system – up to five trash bags placed curbside, each sanitation employee must bend and lift more than five tons of trash every day.  While they do this work, they are also exposed to the potential threat of being hit by cars while they work on City streets. 

Waste management is literally the 5th-most-deadly job in the United States.

With this new cart system – Automated Trash Collection – workers will not need to leave their vehicles.  An automated mechanical arm on the side of the truck will be maneuvered by sanitation workers to pick up and dump the contents of trash carts into the trucks.* 

For this to work well, of course, residents will need to place their new carts correctly at the curb.  Carts need to be placed at least three feet from each other and three feet from other obstructions, such as cars, mailboxes, or trees.

*For rear-yard service, please see FAQs below.

What to Expect

Beginning in October, City workers will deliver the new trash carts, which will be black, to homes. The carts will be fully assembled and ready to roll.  On your regular collection day, place it at the curb (see instructions above).

Choosing Your Cart

The City will provide every household with either a 65-gallon or a 95-gallon cart.  The 65-gallon cart will accommodate the equivalent of three of the black plastic bags the City has provided to residents in the past OR six 13-gallon kitchen bags. The 95-gallon cart will hold the equivalent of five of the black Kirkwood-style bags OR ten 13-gallon kitchen bags.

Route observations of Kirkwood households indicate the majority of residents set out fewer than three of the black trash bags each week. Therefore, the 65-gallon size will be the standard size. 

Collection Costs Will Vary

Collection costs for residents who opt for the 65-gallon cart will be $20.50 per month.  If you opt for the 95-gallon cart, the cost will be $25.50 per month.  Information about the carts and how to choose the size you want will be mailed to residents in the coming weeks.  Residents who do not reply with their selection will receive a 65-gallon cart. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use a cart rather than bags?

Yes. Kirkwood sanitation drivers will no longer get out of their vehicles to pick up garbage bags.

How was 65 gallons determined to be the standard cart size?

Based on the City’s research, a family of three only generates enough trash to require a 65-gallon cart.  The average household size in Kirkwood is less than three people. Additionally, field observations indicate that most households set out three or fewer of the Kirkwood-issued black plastic trash bags each week. A 65-gallon cart will easily hold this amount of trash.

What do I do with my Kirkwood trash bags?

You should have received your annual delivery of black plastic trash bags in August. This will be the last the City provides plastic trash bags. You can use these bags or other bags you purchase in your cart. However, all trash bags must go inside the cart to be collected.  Bags placed at the curb outside of the trash cart will not be collected.

What if my trash doesn’t fit in the cart?

If you currently set out more than three of the Kirkwood-provided black trash bags, you will want to choose the larger-sized cart.  If you have larger items, please arrange for a bulky item pick-up by calling 314-822-5828.

What if I realize the 65-gallon cart is not big enough? Can I change cart sizes?

Yes. Residents will be able to request a different size cart once each year.

Can I have two trash carts?

At this time, the City will only collect one cart of trash per household.

Will curbside recycling still be available?  Can I request a larger recycling cart?

The City will continue to provide curbside recycling.  However, at this time, only one size of recycling cart will be available.

What about my rear-yard service?

Residents who currently receive this service can continue to do so. The cost for collection with a 65-gallong cart will be $35.25 per month.  The cost for collection with a 95-gallon cart will be $40.25 per month.

What if my cart is damaged or needs to be cleaned?

Residents will be responsible for cleaning their carts. Placing all garbage in bags will help keep your trash cart free of residue and odors. (NOTE: Please do NOT bag recyclables. These should be placed loose in the recycling cart.)  If your cart needs to be repaired, call 314-822-5828.  Please do not attempt to repair the cart yourself. 

If I move, can I take my cart with me?

No. The carts are the property of the City of Kirkwood.