1. Durability

Depending on where the bins are to be located, e.g. outdoors or indoors, and for how long, e.g. permanently or temporarily, will affect how durable the bins need to be. Bins that are permanently placed in more remote areas may need to be made of metal or rough duty plastic and may need to be bolted to a concrete base. Bins located in high traffic areas may not need to be as durable but may need to be more aesthetically appealing to attract users.

Exposure to different weather conditions (such as rain, sleet, snow and wind) will also impact the durability requirements of the bins.

Shared Experience

York Region. Public Space Three Stream Waste Diversion Parks Pilot, 2008

York Region conducted a pilot to test the effectiveness six different containers and waste stations in a park setting. The containers/waste stations tested included steel drums, mesh containers, solid walled (Earl Bales) units, tri-sorters and in ground (Molox) units. The bins used three different types of lids including flat lids, side-loading and flip-up lids. The pros and cons of each style of bin was identified in the report and presented below.

At the end of the summer study, the collection staff were asked to complete a 15 question survey about the performance and attributes of the bins (e.g. ease of collection, bin contamination, litter, vandalism). Based on the responses to the questions, the collection staff rated the Tri-sorter units as most preferred and the Mesh units as least preferred.

Waste audits conducted throughout the summer found that “the organics stream had by far the best level of participation with 76% (by weight) of the material in the ‘compost’ receptacles being organic material”, which translates to a 24% contamination rate. The recycling stream had a 45% contamination rate or 55% capture rate for recyclables. The Tri-sorters and the Mesh containers experienced the highest participation levels among the public users and the lowest contamination levels.

To read more from the report, click here.