October 9, 2014 (Star Phoenix) The first pickup of recycling material from apartments and townhouses in Saskatoon is scheduled to happen Friday on a limited basis.
The first bins were delivered on Monday for the start of a program that divided Saskatoon city council, with some councillors questioning the financial sense and others wanting to build on the city’s relationship with Cosmopolitan Industries, which provides work in recycling for people with cognitive disabilities.
“As with all things, as soon as something’s on the ground, people will use it,” said Brenda Wallace, the city’s director of environmental and corporate initiatives. “To be honest, it’s actually been a little quicker than expected.”
The nine-year, $21.5-million contract with Cosmo does not officially start until Nov. 1 and the first collection was not expected to happen until Wednesday.
Cosmo has subcontracted the delivery of bins and the pickup of recycling to Emterra, which opened a single-bin recycling facility in Regina in 2013.
Apartment and townhouse complexes that contract recycling services from another provider have until May 1, 2015, to join the city’s program.
Ken Gryschuk, Cosmo’s manager of business development, said it’s a busy time as the company starts delivering bins and making sure all the apartments and townhouses in the city have informational brochures and posters to let people know about the program.
“We’re getting a whole bunch of co-operation from the property managers,” Gryschuk said Wednesday.
He said Cosmo is willing to try to accommodate special requests, such as two properties sharing one bin where there is not enough space for two.
“We’re willing to adapt to those requests,” he said.
Gryschuk said he encourages any property managers who have not been contacted about the program to call Cosmo at 306-955-9100.
Wallace said the general principal is that each unit should have 50 litres of recycling capacity, and collection will generally happen every two weeks. The program will cost each unit $2.51 per month, to be added to utility bills.
The same materials accepted by the recycling program for single-family homes in Saskatoon will be collected by Cosmo from apartments and townhouses. The materials include all paper, cardboard, plastics, tin cans, glass, milk jugs and cartons.
About 73 of the 900 bins that are expected to be needed by the spring of 2015 have been delivered so far.
The city and Cosmo have worked together in the recycling industry for 30 years.