Just because you live in an apartment, condo or other multifamily housing, it doesn't mean you can't do what is right for the environment.
Plenty of multifamily locations across the country have established and maintained successful recycling programs. Recycling doesn't have to be overlooked in apartment complexes and multifamily housing units just because the city does not regulate trash collection.
City of Irving Drop-Off Recycling Station
The City of Irving’s Solid Waste Services department manages the recycling drop-off station located at the Irving Hunter Ferrell Landfill, 220 W. Hunter Ferrell Road, and it is accessible from 7 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. daily, except for city holidays.
The drop-off station is an added benefit for residents who are not serviced by the city’s scheduled trash pickup. View a full list of recyclable items online.
For more information, contact Irving Solid Waste Services at (972) 721-8059.
To find out about more recycling options, visit the Beyond Curbside Recycling page.
Launch Your Own Recycling Program
Tips for Apartment Owners and Managers
When examining the possibility of establishing a recycling program on site, apartment recycling can be quite challenging. There are factors to consider:
1. Method of collection
- Door-to-door or “valet” service
2. Marketing and Participation
- Getting the word out
- Keeping the materials “clean” from trash
- High participation
- Ongoing participation
- New residents
- Incentives for participation
But, a program can be done!
Here are some basic steps to follow when implementing an apartment recycling program:
1. Measure your current waste volume. This information is considered the “baseline” measurement, and it is important because it will help determine how much can being diverted for recycling.
- How much is currently being throw away each month – ask your waste hauler for this information or observe the dumpster(s) each pick up for one month and document how full the dumpster(s) is when tipped.
- Know what’s being thrown in the dumpster(s) – regular household trash (including recyclables), old furniture, other wastes.
2. Assess your budget. Recycling is not free. There are costs for container rental, tipping fees, etc. However, you could also reduce the number of tips from your garbage dumpster, and you might even negotiate some revenue.
3. Decide upon the best method of collecting the recyclables.
- This could be based upon your current method of collecting the trash.
- Or, you may want to establish a different collection method so that participating in recycling stands out.
4. Decide what recyclables you would like to collect. Common recyclables are newspaper, cardboard, cans, plastics and glass.
5. Select a recycling vendor.
- Ask your current waste hauler if they have a recycling program available for apartment complexes. If your hauler does not, contact recyclers in the area.
- If you are going to use a recycling “dumpster,” be sure to select a convenient location and make sure there is adequate signage so that tenants know that the container(s) is for recycling only.
- Ensure you are conforming to the City of Irving’s code related to dumpster enclosure. For more information, contact Code Enforcement at (972) 721-4830.
- Ask about rebates/income from the recyclables collected.
6. Market your program.
- Create a "Green Team" made up of tenants excited about on-site recycling.
- Allow plenty of time and planning for promotion and to launch the program.
- Develop creative that can be produced into fliers/door hangers and posters, which can be distributed throughout the complex.
- If you have social media … use it to your advantage.
- Keep up the marketing. Because multifamily housing tends to have higher turnover, it’s important to keep promoting the program.
7. Monitor both the recycling and garbage containers.
- By monitoring the garbage containers, you may be able to reduce the number of tips and/or collection units and save money.
- Monitor the recycling containers to make sure there are no “unwanteds" or "contaminants,” which can challenge the program.
8. Celebrate the success of the recycling program!
- Host fun activities on-site to help kick-off/promote the recycling program.
- If revenue is received, consider putting the funds into the marketing effort.
- Recognize your green team individuals.
- Recognize the volumes recycled. These volumes can be measured against your baseline data to demonstrate tons diverted.