Multi-family recycling

A multi-family property includes residential condominiums, apartments and any residential building with multiple units that does not receive city curbside collection services. It is mandatory for all multi-family properties to have a recycling program.

The building owner or manager is responsible for implementing the recycling program; this includes property managers and condo board associations. Individual residents are not responsible for implementing the program unless they own their unit and there is no condo board or property manager in place.

The recycling program must accept at minimum:

  • Mixed paper
  • Cardboard
  • Plastic containers, #1-7
  • Refundable beverage containers (excluding glass)
  • Tetra packs (juice and soup boxes)
  • Metal (tin food cans, aluminum pie plates)

Other accepted materials may include the following, speak to your hauler about options for your property:

  • Plastic film (shopping bags, stretchy plastics, etc.)
  • Food grade glass containers
  • Scrap metal
  • Hazardous waste collection

Waste and recycling strategy

Multi-family properties must submit a waste and recycling strategy within 30 days of occupancy. The strategy must:

  • Ensure the waste and recycling generated at the property is collected, stored and hauled for processing
  • Ensure residents are educated about recycling services, including types of materials accepted and the location of recycling receptacles. Information must be distributed within 30 days of a resident moving in.
  • Provide clear and visible signage on or near bins indicating:

           -  The container is only for recyclable materials, and
           -  The types of accepted recyclable materials.

Strategies can be submitted online, printed and submitted via mail to 21 East Lake Hill, Airdrie, AB, or scanned and e-mailed to Visit multifamily for more information.

Any waste and recycling strategy that is not accepted due to insufficient information or other reasons must be resubmitted within 30 days of denial notification.


Choosing a contractor

Building owners and managers should choose a private recycler that can accommodate their building’s requirements/needs. If a contractor can provide individual unit collection, onsite storage will not be required.

The building owner or manager can: Determine the style of bin(s)

  • Determine whether they would like a source separated program or a single stream program
  • Determine the appropriate frequency of pick-up

When reviewing your current program, choosing a contractor and creating a recycling program, answering the following questions may be helpful:

Current program:

  • Who is responsible for managing the waste contract?
  • Do you have a recycling or waste program in place? If so, who is collecting it, how often and what materials are accepted?
  • Are there any issues with your current service?
  • • Do you have a contract with your current private recycler or waste hauler? If so when does it expire, is there an early cancellation fee and an automatic renewal clause? It is common for private recyclers and waste haulers to include an automatic renewal clause in their contracts, which means unless you cancel the service you will automatically be bound by a new contract when the old one expires.

Is the frequency of pick-up and size of bin working for your property? Check how full the bin is on pick-up day, do this over a few pick-ups to get an idea of the average amounts.

  • Not full: If the bin is only half full or ¾ full each time there may be an opportunity to decrease the size of the bin, allowing room for a recycling bin or decreasing the frequency of pick-up; both of which can result in cost savings
  • - Overflowing: If the bin is overflowing each time, the frequency of pick-up may be inadequate. However, with the addition of a recycling program there will likely be less waste. Continue to monitor after the program is implemented to ensure the bin is no longer overflowing.

Questions to ask before choosing a hauler:

  • Can you do a site visit to help with bin placement?
  • Is it possible to bundle services and are there any savings in doing so?
  • What materials do you collect?
  • Do you collect any other materials (i.e. organics, household hazardous waste, scrap metal etc.)?
  • Do you accept comingled or source separated recycling?
  • If materials need to be source separated, how do they need to be prepared?
  • Can you advise on how many and of what size bins I will need for my property?
  • Do you have an Airdrie business license? Operators must hold a current City of Airdrie business license to operate in Airdrie. Visit and search business licenses for more information.
  • Where is the material being hauled? The City of Airdrie Transfer Site and Recycle Depot will not accept material from private recyclers.
  • Do you offer individual unit collection?
  • Do you provide inside bins, outside bins and/or compactors? If so, what does it cost and how much storage space is needed?
  • Do you provide educational materials and signs? If so, what is the cost?
  • Can you provide weights of the waste/ recycling and diversion rates? (this information is helpful when determining the success of your program).

Source separated vs. comingled/singlestream

Source separated – A system where each recyclable material is stored and collected in separate bins.

Comingled/single-stream – All recyclable materials are collected in one bin.


Container options


Rolling carts come in a variety of sizes from 80 litres up to 360 litres. They can be placed inside or outside and are easily maneuvered.

Frong-load bins

These bins are often seen in multi-family complexes and are usually placed in a central outdoor area, a loading dock or underground garage. They come in a large range of sizes from two to eight yards.


If you can’t find room for a front-load dumpster or carts, ask your private recycler if they can collect recycling in bags or
boxes from each unit.


Other considerations


If possible, place recycling bins next to garbage bins where residents can easily access them. Bins should be kept clear of ice/snow in the winter and should be well lit and easy to find.


If a recycling contractor is altering the landscape, building a structure or removing a parking space to accommodate bins they must contact the City of Airdrie Planning Department to ensure compliance with the land use bylaw.


Contact us

Waste & Recycling

P. 403.948.0246

F. 403.948.8819


Recycle Depot hours
Monday, Tuesday
Wednesday to Saturday, Sunday
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.