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County rolls out details and new website for highly anticipated automated cart collection progra

Midhurst/May 13, 2021 – The County of Simcoe is rolling out a new automated cart system for curbside waste collection starting November 1, 2021. The new system will provide an easy and safe solution for residents to manage their waste each week.

To support residents with the upcoming change, today the County launched a new information resource, carts.simcoe.ca. The website area features a wealth of information about automated collection, details about the size of the carts, instructions for set out, storage tips, visuals, videos and FAQs all geared to help residents adapt to this new system starting this November.

“On behalf of County Council, we look forward to enhancing waste services starting November 1, 2021, joining leading municipalities across North America that have successfully switched to this improved collection system,” said Warden George Cornell. “We're confident that residents will find the easy to wheel carts to be a far more convenient solution than carrying and storing multiple bags, containers and open bins each week. We know that the switch to bi-weekly collections in early 2020 was challenging for residents, and with increased vertical storage the cart system will be a significant improvement. We’re here to assist residents with this change and pleased to introduce carts.simcoe.ca as one of our main tools to help residents as we shift to the future of waste collection services.”

Roll out details:

Cart Delivery (August-October):
Between August and October, eligible locations will receive three complementary carts, one each for garbage, recycling and organics, delivered with instructions. Residents should continue to use their current system of bins, bags and containers until November 1. Starting November 1, the new collection provider, Miller Waste Services, will begin to collect your waste through the automated cart system.

Collection Day Changes: Starting November 1 your collection day and time may change, although the frequency of bi-weekly garbage and recycling collection and weekly organics will stay the same. Starting November 1, we will move to a four-day collection schedule, to improve predictability when missed collections occur due to poor weather or road conditions, allowing resources to return to missed areas. Information about new collection days will be communicated in Fall 2021 through the annual waste management calendar mailed to all County households, through advertising and social media, on the County’s website, and on the Simcoe County Collects App, among other communications.

Public Awareness:
In addition to introducing carts.simcoe.ca, the County is rolling out a social media campaign featuring reviews and insights from cart users in other communities. Residents across the County will also receive a mailer featuring information about the carts throughout May. A detailed education campaign will also commence in late July, including a virtual Public Information Centre (PIC). The purpose for the PIC is to provide roll-out details, timelines and instructions. Although we continue to gather public feedback, this particular session will focus on providing information to assist residents with the change to the new system. Additional communications will be provided during key milestones leading up to the November 1 launch.

Quick Facts:

Improved system of collection:
In the automated cart system, garbage, recycling, and organic materials are stored and set out at the curb in easy-to-use wheeled carts, so there’s no more bending over to lift and carry different boxes, bins and bags to the curb. Carts are emptied using a mechanical arm on the collection vehicle, which is an efficient touch-free system that helps keep everyone safer.

Carts are used across North America:
This November, the County will join leading municipalities in utilizing an automated cart system to deliver an efficient, cost-effective service for residents. Municipalities, including many communities similar to Simcoe County – such as Peel Region, the cities of Timmins and Sault St. Marie, Southgate Township, many counties in Southwestern Ontario, and cities such at Toronto and Guelph – have already made this transition to carts. Several more municipalities, including the City of Edmonton, are also set to make the move this year.

Easier to use:
Carts offer the added convenience of wheels, ergonomic handles, lids, and a gravity locking system on the organics carts which automatically unlocks the cart when it is tipped by the mechanical arm on the truck. These sturdy, ergonomic features make it easier for residents of all ages and abilities to wheel the carts to and from the curb without bending, lifting or making numerous trips. This will be particularly useful to those with certain mobility challenges, as well as seniors.

Require less storage space: Carts create more vertical storage space, allowing residents to consolidate a variety of smaller bins, bags and containers into three carts. The majority of residents will reduce the storage footprint by up to 50% compared to an equivalent volume of material in smaller bins, boxes and containers.

Safer and more predictable service:
As well as being great for residents, the automated system is much safer and less strenuous for collection workers. This added level of workplace safety will help to expand the labour force, so service disruptions due to labour shortages are minimized under the new cart system.  The touchless system also helps fight the spread of pathogens, a critical step towards fighting possible transmissions in the event of future pandemics.

Good for the environment: The larger organics cart is great for the environment by adding more space for food scraps and encouraging organics over garbage. Cart lids and a gravity locking system on organics carts will also help to reduce wind-blown litter in our ditches and roadways, while protecting against critters.

Cart sizes fit the needs of the average household:
Cart sizes were selected based on the requirements of the average County household. We are also planning for the future; we know that Provincial changes are coming soon to recycling programs, which may allow more materials to be recycled. Carts provide flexibility for additional capacity when needed. Uniform cart sizes for each waste stream also helps to keep costs in check.


Cart Type

Capacity

Height

Depth Front to Back

Width Side to Side

Recycling (blue lid)

360 litres

110.4 cm

84.5 cm

74.1 cm

Garbage (black lid)

240 litres

102.8 cm

71.4 cm

67.8 cm

Organics (green lid)

120 litres

95.2 cm

62.2 cm

46.9 cm

Getting rid of old bins and containers after November 1st: The County will provide more information on options to properly re-purpose your old bins and containers after the new cart system launches, including a County Waste Facility drop-off program.

Your feedback: We will seek feedback on carts after the initial implementation takes place and users have had a chance to gain experience with carts.
These changes do not apply to the cities of Barrie and Orillia.
For further information, visit carts.simcoe.ca, download the Simcoe County Collects App from the App Store or Google Play, or contact Service Simcoe Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1-800-263-3199 or service@simcoe.ca.

Automated Cart Collection Photo Caption: Demonstration of new automated cart collection system featuring one of the 90+ new Miller Waste collection vehicles.
The County of Simcoe is composed of sixteen member municipalities and provides crucial public services to County residents in addition to providing paramedic and social services to the separated cities of Barrie and Orillia. Visit our website at simcoe.ca.

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