Ypsilanti City residents will soon have a whole lot more room for recyclables.
On Tuesday, Sept. 13, city leaders OK’d the purchase of 5,000 recycling carts for residents participating in Ypsilanti’s curbside pick-up program. Officials intend to roll out the new 96-gallon carts to all households eligible for the program in April of next year.
The city currently offers 25-gallon bins for recycling, according to Ypsilanti Department of Public Services Director Ron Akers.
The $292,000 recycling cart purchase is fully covered by grant funds coming from the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, Washtenaw County, and The Recycling Partnership, a national nonprofit, a city memo states.
Currently, residential properties with four units or less can participate in the curbside program, but that could soon change.
Ypsilanti is evaluating expanding the opportunity to multi-family properties with between five and eight units around the time officials roll out the new carts in the spring, Akers said.
The city is purchasing 300 to 400 extra carts for that reason, he told City Council on Tuesday, adding city leaders will get more information on the potential expansion of the program at a future meeting.
Depending on the impact of the expansion, multifamily buildings with a greater number of units could eventually be included, he said. Landlords will have to opt-in to ensure someone will regularly transfer the carts to and from the curb.
Servicing large apartment complexes will likely be beyond the scope of the city’s current equipment, Akers told City Council.
The items that can be recycled in the new carts will stay the same, though the city will be preparing educational materials to send out before the rollout.
Much of the Ypsilanti area will now have access to the carts at no cost. Ypsilanti Township officials OK’d purchasing 15,000 carts through similar grants in August and intend to complete deliveries by Thanksgiving.
Ypsilanti city officials intend to have conversations with businesses participating in city recycling, Akers said, to discuss their particular needs. Some communities use recycling dumpsters in downtown areas, he added, but they risk the common pitfall of becoming contaminated with trash.
For more information on the city’s curbside recycling program, click here.