EllieAna Hale
Community Engagement Intern & Reporter

Kansas City is making strides toward a cleaner future with the introduction of new 65-gallon trash carts. Backed by an $8.5 million City ordinance, roughly a year to the day after recycling carts were introduced, 162,000 carts will begin to be distributed to eligible households beginning on May 1st, with a targeted completion date of October 2024.

This initiative promises to reduce litter and make trash bags inaccessible to wildlife. Residents will receive informational pamphlets to guide them on usage, promoting seamless integration into daily routines. The new trash cart program follows an initial rollout of trash carts in a dozen selected urban neighborhoods including the Northeast Industrial District and the Washington Wheatley neighborhood. 

With the implementation of the new trash carts, trash amnesty will be discontinued after a final amnesty day following the July 4, 2024 holiday. According to city sources, the new carts will make amnesty unnecessary due to the increased capacity of the trash carts. 

Additionally, unlike the recycling cart program residents were able to opt out of, there is no such option with the new trash carts. Moving forward, to receive trash collection services from the city, a trash cart is required. Trash bags placed at the curb, according to the city’s Public Works Department, will not be picked up. 

With automated features aligning with existing waste management infrastructure, the city anticipates streamlined collection processes, even in extreme weather conditions. This move towards fully automated collection marks a significant step forward in waste management efficiency.

The inclusion of recycling carts alongside trash carts emphasizes Kansas City’s commitment to waste management and environmental protection.

Trash cart delivery schedule will be as follows: 

  • Phase 1:

    oCentral: Wednesday Household Collection

o North & South: Friday Household Collection

  • Phase 2:

o All Regions: Thursday Household Collection

  • Phase 3:

o Central: Friday Household Collection

o North & South: Wednesday Household Collection

  • Phase 4:

o All Regions: Tuesday Household Collection

  • Phase 5:

o All Regions: Monday Household Collection

How to Use Your New Trash Cart

1.   Place Trash in Plastic Bags. All trash must be placed in plastic bags and bags must be fastened closed. Please do not place loose trash in your cart including pet waste, cat litter, diapers, hygiene products, ashes, sawdust, packaging peanuts, etc.

2.   Close Lid. There is no limit to how many bags to place in the cart, but the lid must fully close and the cart cannot exceed 250 lbs. Up to 2 excess tagged trash bags that do not fit in the cart with the lid fully closed can be placed next to the cart on the curb.

3.   Space Carts Apart. Trash carts and recycling carts must be placed 3 feet apart at the curb with the handles of the cart in the back, not on the street side. Bulky items scheduled for pickup need to be placed away from carts.

4.   Trash carts must be used for curbside trash and recycling collection. The cart signals the truck to stop. Trash bags placed on the curb with no cart will not be collected.