Small Businesses and Small Apartments with City Collection (6 units or less)
Small businesses and residential housing of six or less units qualify for city trash and recycling service. The City charges an annual "solid resources" fee for these services of $300 (less than $6.00 a week for both trash and recycling services).
Requirements for solid resource recycling services to small businesses serviced by the City include the following:
Filing an official Recycling Plan online with the Philadelphia Streets Department. Click here for more information and to complete your plan.
Publicly post your Recycling Plan and distribute copies to all employees and tenants in the building.
Provide adequate containers for separation of recyclables by employees and tenants.
Make sure to work hard to maximize your recycling program so that you can realize the benefits of reduced trash costs and the marketing value of showing that you have quality environmental programming.
Materials to separate are the same as residential single-stream materials and include:
- Flattened cardboard
- Mixed paper (newspaper, junk mail, magazines, catalogs, old files, etc.)
- Glass jars and bottles
- Metal food and beverage cans (aluminum, bimetal tin cans)
- Mixed plastic containers (#1 - #7)
Styrofoam products (cups, plates, clamshells, peanuts, and rigid packaging material) can be taken to the Sanitation Convenience Center at State Rd. and Ashburner St.
The following materials should not be placed in recycling containers:
Place containers out at the curb on your area's normal recycling day. See Residential Collection Schedules for information on recycling days. Containers must be composed of rigid material and clearly marked or designated for "Recycling." You do not need an "official" Philadelphia Recycling Bin. See the Resources page for a list of local businesses that sell recycling containers of all types.
If you live in a small multi-family apartment building (six units or less), you qualify to participate in the Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Program, which lets you earn Recycling Points every time the city picks up your recyclables. Go to PhillyRecyclingPays.com to register online and to learn more about this positive and exciting program. Once you place your Rewards sticker on your recycling bin, you qualify for hundreds of shopping discounts throughout the region. You can also donate your points to Green School Projects around the city. Multi-family housing that is greater than six units does not qualify.
You can learn more about the Recycling Rewards program here.
Recycling Containers (Any Container Will Do) and Cardboard Set Out
It is not necessary to use an official City of Philadelphia recycling bin. Any durable, rigid container of 32-gallon capacity or less is acceptable. Simply mark it with the words "Recycling" and Sanitation workers will know that material is meant for our recycling trucks.
Cardboard should be neatly flattened and bundled.
From time to time, the City makes recycling containers available to residents and businesses receiving city collection services. At times, special labels are also available to stick on non-official bins. Click here to find out about availability of containers and labels.
Please note, however, that there are numerous container options available for recycling. Click here to view and/or download a PDF of container resources.
Required set-out limitations
Beginning in 2010, the City charges small businesses (including apartment buildings of six units or less) an annual "solid resources" fee for trash and recycling collection services of $300. This fee is less than $6.00 a week for both trash and recycling services.
Set Out Requirements
Trash containers should be set out on the sidewalk adjacent to the curb or adjacent to the driveway where there is driveway collection. In most areas of the City, trash may be set out at any time between 7:00 p.m. the night before collection day to 7:00 a.m. the day of collection. In center city, trash may be set out between 8:00 p.m. the night before collection day to 6:00 a.m. the day of collection.
Maximum Amounts Per Week for City Collection Service:
Rubbish (including yard waste if not leaf season):
- Premises with one unit/single family: 4 cans
- Premises with 2 to 6 units: 6 cans
- Premises with businesses: 6 cans
- Two bags may be substituted for one can
Recycling (please use durable, rigid containers sized 32-gallons or less; no paper or plastic bags, no boxes for material setout):
Bagged leaves during leaf season:
Bag or container (cardboard is to be neatly flattened and bundled):
May not exceed 40 pounds.