Yard waste collection and other seasonal services
Bicycle reuse program - open April 17, 2017
Dropping off your old, unwanted bicycle at the Waterloo waste management site will help our community in many ways. Through our partners, volunteers work with youth to teach bike repair skills, refurbished bikes are given to persons living with low incomes, and useful material is diverted from our one-and-only landfill.
Acceptable items: Bicycles only. Please, no wheelchairs, exercise bikes or tricycles.
Season: April to October
Where: Waterloo Waste Management site, 925 Erb Street West (Gate 2)
Time: Monday to Saturday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Last year, this program diverted over nine metric tonnes of bikes into reuse and away from landfill.
A special thanks to all our past and present partners and sponsors for making this program a success:
- Recycle Cycles
- Goodwill Industries
- Morell Kelly Law firm and the Lidz on Kidz program
- Alan Homes
- Heaven's Bicycle Shop
- Waterloo Catholic District School Board
Refurbished bikes are also available (for a minimal cost) from:
- Heaven's Bicycle Shop, 725 King Street North Waterloo, 519-807-7002
- Recycle Cycles, 37 Market Lane, Kitchener, 519-804-2466 ext. 23
- Catholic District School Board, Bicycle Hotline: 519-578-3660, ext. 2205
Interested in becoming a partner? Or need more information about the Blended Bicycle program? Please contact Deanna Dakin at 519-575-4400 ext. 8416.
~ Back to top of page~
Building material reuse program - Habitat for Humanity Waterloo Region - open April 17, 2017
Reduce the amount of material going to our one-and-only landfill by donating to Habitat for Humanity Waterloo Region (HHWR). HHWR accepts donations of new, overstocked, seconds, used, discontinued items and salvageable building materials. The ReStore then sells those items to the public at a reduced cost to raise funds for projects.
Please visit their website to see the list of acceptable donations. You'll be surprised what you can donate!
Locally, Habitat for Humanity Waterloo Region owns and operates two ReStore outlets and a donations-only drop-off program:
- Waterloo ReStore: 120 Northfield Drive East, Waterloo N2J 4G8 | 519-747-0664 ext. 221
- Cambridge ReStore: 200 Preston Parkway, Cambridge N3H 5N1 | 519-653-5666
- Waterloo Waste Management site 925 Erb Street West (Gate 2), Waterloo. Tel: 519-883-4015 Season: April to October Hours: Monday, Thursday and Saturday 8:00 a.m. to 5 p.m
Are you renovating or remodelling your kitchen? HHWR's salvage crew will remove your unwanted kitchen for no charge. Learn more here: kitchen salvage program
To learn more about Habitat for Humanity Waterloo Region, please visit: www.habitatwr.ca
~ Back to top of page~
Christmas tree collection
Our special curbside collection program for Christmas trees has ended.
If you still have a Christmas tree, here are ways to handle it:
- Bring it to one of our Regional facilities for treecycling. Regular fees will apply. Trees dropped off will be chipped for mulch!
- Set it out for garbage collection by 7 a.m. on your regular collection day. Trees set out at the curb will go to landfill.
Please make sure that your tree is properly prepared: remove all decorations and the stand, do not bag.
Thank you for all your efforts in 'tree cycling'!
Want to get reminders about the Christmas Tree collection schedule? Download the free My Waste app from the App Store or Google Play. Blackberry users can access My-Waste functions via Pingstreet, available through Blackberry World. An online version is available, too!
Below are some common reasons why Christmas trees may be left behind at the curb. Unsure why it wasn't collected? Call Customer Service at 519-575-4400.
|Here are some common reasons why items are left behind:
||Here are some ways to deal with the items left behind:
|Item is not acceptable in our program, such as artificial Christmas trees.
||Please consider donating your usable artificial Christmas tree to a local charity or organization.
Otherwise, please place it in the garbage. Or bring it to a Regional facility. Fees will apply.
|Christmas tree collection schedule is not in effect
||Christmas trees will be collected from January 2 to 13, 2017. If you still have your tree after collection has ended, please take your un-bagged, undecorated Christmas tree to a Regional facility. Fees will apply.
|Christmas tree was set out late.
||Collection begins at 7 a.m. so all items must be set out by then to guarantee collection.
|Christmas tree has not been properly prepared,
||Please remove all decorations, the stand, etc. Do not place in plastic bag. Please cut - maximum length allowed is 1.8 metres (6 feet). Each part of the Christmas tree should weigh no more than 23 kg (50 lbs).
|Christmas tree has not been set out in a proper location, such as on top of a snowbank
||Place your Christmas tree in a spot at the end of your driveway so that it can be easily seen and reached by collection staff. Do not place the tree on top of or behind snowbanks or behind cars parked along the curb.
~ Back to top of page~
Yard waste that the Region collects along the curb is turned into compost. Compost is an earthy-smelling soil conditioner and can be used for home gardens and lawns.
Residents of Waterloo Region can pick up compost (maximum 5 bushels) from spring to fall at no charge while supplies last at the Cambridge (201 Savage Drive) and Waterloo (925 Erb Street West - Gate 2) Waste Management sites between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday. Compost is not available during the winter.
Season: April until October as supply is available.
Thank you for diverting yard waste from landfill and helping to make useful compost.
Tips for keeping your containers collectable in the winter!
- Keep containers visible and easily accessible.
- Place them at the end of your driveway - not on snowbanks. Green bins, blue boxes and garbage containers placed on top of or behind snowbanks, on sidewalks, or buried in the snow pose a safety hazard to pedestrians, vehicles and our collection crews. Alternatively, shovel a ledge in the snowbank for your containers. Please make sure it's on the road-side, not the sidewalk-side. Collection crews have to have access to containers at the street curb.
- Do no set out garbage in white garbage bags.
- Ensure your organics keep loose and are easy to empty out by draining liquids before placing organics in the bin, using liner bags, layering paper organics with food scraps, and/or placing a paper egg carton or beverage take-out tray on the bottom of your green bin.
- Place items out the day of collection by 7 a.m., rather than the night before.
Thanks for helping to make collection safe and efficient in snowy and cold conditions.
Tips for a windy day
If not properly prepared, recyclables, garbage and even the containers they are in can blow around and litter our community.
Here are some tips to help ensure what you set out is collected:
- Place paper (newspaper, flyers, magazines, etc.) in a plastic grocery bag and tie the handles of the bag.
- Place your bagged paper in a blue box and place that box on top of your container-filled blue box.
- Don't overfill your blue box or garbage can.
- Save lightweight items for the following week's collection.
- Write your address on your blue box, green bin, and garbage can (and lid) in permanent marker. This makes it easier for them to be returned.
- Crush bottles and cans, and flatten and bundle corrugated cardboard (maximum 75 cm by 75 cm by 20 cm or 30 in. by 30 in. by 8 in.) to make it harder for the wind to pick them up.
- Make sure garbage can lids are securely closed.
- Don't set items to the curb the night before collection if a storm or high winds are expected. Place your items at the curb by 7 a.m. on the day of collection.
- Reminder that Styrofoam is not collected in the Blue Box program. Packaging Styrofoam (large bulky pieces that protect electronics, for instance) can be dropped off at the Waterloo Waste Management Centre, 925 Erb Street West (Gate 2) Monday to Saturday from 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. Fees will apply.
Thanks for your help! As always, collection crews will do their best to collect items at the curb.
~ Back to top of page~
Yard waste residential collection program
A separate yard waste collection runs every second week from spring to fall, on the opposite week from garbage collection. See 2017 yard waste collection schedule.
What is yard waste? It includes: leaves, plant trimmings, spring yard rakings, grass clippings, weeds, branches, pine cones. It does not include garbage, litter, pet waste, and wood waste contaminated with the Emerald ash borer or Spruce budworm (see below for disposal details).
When is collection? Collection is seasonal from late March to November and is done every other week during these months. Please use the following links to find out details:
What are other options for dealing with yard waste?
- Backyard composting:. For information on the benefits of compost, how to build your own composter, and how to use compost, please go to the Compost Council of Canada website.
- Drop off at Regional transfer stations. Fees will apply.
Please note: Wood waste contaminated with the Emerald ash borer or Spruce budworm: Do not recycle this material in the Yard Waste program. Please bring to either the Cambridge or Waterloo transfer station. Advise staff at the scale, so that the contaminated material is directed to the landfill.
Want to get reminders about your Yard Waste collection schedule? Download the free My Waste app from the App Store or Google Play. Blackberry users can access My Waste functions via Pingstreet, available through Blackberry World.
What happens to it?
Collection issue for yard waste - when items are left behind and how to deal with them:
There are a number of reasons why things are left behind, including by-law requirements and health and safety concerns. Was your yard waste left behind with one of these stickers?
If so, below is some information which can help identify why items were left behind and how you can deal with them.
Here are some common reasons why items are left behind:
Here are some ways to deal with the items left behind:
Item is not acceptable in our program, such as plastic bags, dog toys, garbage, metal, lumber. These types of items do not compost in our program.
Remove unacceptable items and set out your yard waste on your next scheduled collection day. Alternatively, bring yard waste to one of the Region's facilities. Fees will apply.
Item presents a health and safety concern to the driver - such as pet waste, glass.
Remove pet waste, wrap it in newspaper or a paper bag, and then set it in your green bin.
Please wrap broken glass in several layers of newspaper and tape it closed and/or in a thick, strong plastic bag, and place in the garbage for next week's garbage collection.
Item was set out late.
Collection begins at 7 a.m. so all items must be set out by then to guarantee collection.
Item was set out not according to the schedule, i.e., yard waste collection schedule is not in effect or items were set out on the wrong week.
Yard waste collection is seasonal - it runs from March to November and is collected every other week during those months. Please check the schedule to ensure you set out on the correct week.
Yard waste has not been properly prepared, such as improper container, oversized branches, unbundled branches.
Yard waste set out in blue boxes, cardboard boxes, green bins, or plastic bags will not be collected.
Yard waste should be placed in:
. Kraft paper yard waste bag, or
. A garbage can with either a Region Yard Waste sticker or brightly coloured ribbon.
All bundles, bags and containers must weigh less than 23 kgs (50 lbs.)
Branches must be less than 7.5 cm (3 in.) in diameter, bundled, tied, and under 92 cm (3 ft.) in length. Any tree debris larger than noted above will not be collected and can be brought to a Regional facility. Fees will apply.
Item is banned - is not allowed due to by-law requirements. Includes stumps, materials considered to be household hazardous waste (compact fluorescent light bulbs, paint, syringes, etc.)
Curbside collection trucks are not equipped to handle stumps, tree trunks or other large tree debris. Take this material to a Regional facility. Fees will apply.
Take household hazardous waste to a local business or a Regional facility. Check out the information available on our website.
Yard waste has not been set out in a proper location (such as behind parked cars)
Place your yard waste in a spot at the end of your driveway so that it can be easily seen and reached by collection staff. Do not place these items on top of or behind snow banks or behind cars parked along the curb.
~ Back to top of page~
Wood chips (mulch)
Branches and Christmas trees are shredded into mulch. This mulch can work well as an underdressing to suppress weeds and retain moisture. It is not "garden quality".
Residents of Waterloo Region can pick up mulch from spring to fall at no charge while supplies last at the Cambridge (201 Savage Drive) and Waterloo (925 Erb Street West - Gate 2) Waste Management sites between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday. Wood chips are not available during the winter.
Season: April until October, as supply is available.
~ Back to top of page~