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Cart placement tips

The City uses trucks with mechanical arms to pick up black, blue and green carts.

The mechanical arms need space to reach, grab and lift the bins. To make sure your carts are collected quickly and safely, they need to be properly placed.

For a print guide on using your carts, download Your Guide to Cart Collection.


Follow these quick steps to get ready for collection day

Fill your cart

Fill your carts and lower the lids. Make sure the material isn't packed in too tightly.

Food and yard waste belongs in the green cart. See Using Your Green Cart.

Recyclables belong in the b​lue cart. See Using Your Blue Cart.

Garbage belongs in the black cart. See Using Your Black Cart.

Fill Your Cart  

Is your cart full?

Effective March 24, 2020 there are changes to cart collection to maintain service for Calgarians while keeping collectors safe and healthy by reducing interactions with the public and contact with various surfaces.

  • Please hold onto extra garbage, recyclables or yard waste until your next collection day, when you can fit them into the appropriate cart.
  • Alternatively, please ask your neighbours if they have space in their carts that you could also use.

Extra yard waste: No extra bags of yard waste will be picked up. If your green cart is full, please store your extra yard waste on your property until your next collection day. Green cart collection will remain at every other week, instead of switching to weekly collection in April.

After your cart has been emptied, please put extra yard waste and yard waste bags directly into the green cart for the next pickup.

Extra recycling: Extra bags are not accepted.

  • Break down boxes to make extra room in your blue bin.
  • Take extra recycling to a community recycling depot or save it for next week.

Extra garbage: No extra bags of garbage will be picked up. If your black cart is full, please store your extra bags on your property until your next collection day.

Black carts can hold three or four bags of garbage.


Place your cart

To ensure collection, carts need to be out by 7 a.m. on your collection day. Place the carts on flat ground, not on a raised platform.

  • Front street: Place cart wheels against the curb.
  • Back lane: Place cart wheels with enough space to walk between your cart and your back hedge, garage or fence.

Winter tips

  • Clear snow and ice to put your carts on even ground. Place carts in a dry area so they don’t get frozen to the ground.
  • Don’t place carts behind or on top of snow banks.
  • Clear snow off your blue cart lid and keep the lid closed so that paper and other recyclables stay dry.

Please note: Where you place your cart may change during snow route parking bans or spring street cleaning.

Place Your Cart  

Cart spacing

Leave enough space around your carts so you can walk between and around them.

  • At least 3 metres (10 f) of space above your carts. Keep away from basketball nets, eavestroughs and electric lines.
  • At least 1 m (3 ft) from obstacles on either side, such as parked cars, power poles, utility boxes, fences, downspouts and garages.
  • At least 0.5 m (2 ft) of space behind your carts.
Cart Spacing  

Storing carts

Put your carts away by 7 p.m. on your collection day by pulling them back against your fence or property. Don't leave your carts blocking the alleyways.

This helps keep our alleys clean and prevents others from using your carts.

You are responsible for taking care of your cart and keeping it clean.

Storing Carts  
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