Thursday, November 17, 2016

City to deliver 60K new trash carts

In two weeks, contractor crews will start delivering the first of 60,000 new wheeled trash carts at no additional charge to Knoxville residences.

The new standardized carts are a key component to modernize and improve the City’s household garbage collection.

“Going to a citywide system that uses standardized trash receptacles increases the efficiency, safety, health and aesthetic aspects of residential garbage collection,” said Chad Weth, the City’s Public Service Director.

“The standardized carts translate into a nearly $2 million-a-year savings to taxpayers on garbage collection. Additionally, the carts allow our contractor, Waste Connections, to utilize trucks designed to hoist the receptacles and dump the trash into the back of their garbage trucks. This significantly cuts down on injuries and improves the quality of work for garbage collectors.”

The new 95-gallon trash carts are similar in size and appearance to the City’s existing curbside recycling receptacles, but the two carts will be differentiated by color to avoid confusion. The recycling carts are brown; the trash carts will be charcoal gray.

Rachel Butzler, the City’s Solid Waste Manager, said most U.S. cities have moved to collection systems with standardized carts.

“Residents should set out the new carts for garbage collection beginning Monday, Jan. 2, 2017,” Butzler said. “We think that people will find the wheeled carts to be easy to maneuver and large enough to hold a family’s weekly garbage.”

The day of garbage pickup is not expected to change, and residents should continue to take the cart to their usual collection location, with the handle toward the residence. It is critical that garbage carts do not block traffic, mail service or sidewalks or cause a safety issue. The new garbage carts will come with a flyer attached to the handle that will explain how to use the cart, how to handle bulky waste and what to do with old garbage cans.

The City’s back-door garbage service will not be interrupted. Back-door service is offered to those 75 years of age or older or those with a medical need. For a back-door garbage service application, residents should call 311.

For more details, call the City’s 311 Call Center or visit

Also, a new blog – CartSmart – has been created on the City’s website. Visit for updates on the collection of garbage and recyclables.

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