MULTI-FAMILY / HIGH-RISE BUILDING WASTE RECYCLING
Apartment complexes, lofts, condominiums, and high-rise
buildings are types of multi-family buildings.
Depending on the legal jurisdiction, some student housing
properties may also be considered multi-family.
These types of buildings generate hundreds of pounds of waste
per year, much of which is recyclable and holds significant
Despite the recycling opportunity available within
multi-family buildings, there are many challenges that deter
tenants and building owners from participating.
disposal is usually more convenient.
bins have insufficient space for all materials.
- Tenants do
not value the recycling program.
owners are unable to keep tenants accountable to recycling
- Tenants often
move quickly. This decreases motivation and means constant
education for new
cultural, linguistic, and socioeconomic factors affect behavior
and understanding of
resources for material management and limited space for bins and
Within multi-family buildings, managers and owners must
consider a number of factors when implementing or improving a
facilities and tenant population.
restrictions on your program may be related to building design.
Space availability may limit the types of recyclable material
the building can collect.
Access may limit the types of drop off or pick up
methods, as well as frequency.
the tenant population will assist in molding the most effective
program. A large
percentage of elderly adults may require special collection, for
A single stream
collection system for multi-family buildings may be the most
limits the tenant effort and increases volume and participation.
In addition, single stream often costs less for owners and
At a minimum,
most multi-family buildings collect glass, aluminum cans,
plastic bottles, paper (newspapers, magazines, and copy papers),
cardboard, and corrugated boxes.
Because tenants are often moving in and out, buildings
could easily collect a high volume of corrugated boxes.
Within close communities, like multi-family
buildings, tenants must be motivated to participate.
Simple statistics may not affect tenant behavior.
Consider having a floor leader who will promote
recycling. Also, be
careful to avoid negative, commanding signs, like “Don’t
litter.” Include the reader, and therefore the community, in the
MULTI-FAMILY BUILDING RECYCLING IN PRACTICE
This high rise
development company builds mainly in urban communities. Novare
builds hotels and condominium buildings, often paired with
retail and office space. In the
area, Novare has implemented recycling plans for 10 of its
The company provides drop off centers on each floor and in the
Ninety-six gallon carts are used to collect bottles, cans,
newspapers, magazines, and other mixed
paper. Each building
also has a large bin in its loading dock for corrugated
cardboard recycling. Recyclables are picked up weekly from each
in Atlanta, Post Apartments
operates properties in
Atlanta and other areas throughout the
nation. Post began
its recycling efforts in 1995 and continues by providing
centralized and in-home collection bins for residents. Post
communities divert about three tons of waste from landfills per
month and save approximately $120,000 per year.