Trash & Recycling

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  • Changes to City’s Waste & Recycling Collection Program Starts September 1, 2015

    Alpine Waste & Recycling TeamIn July, City Council selected a new waste hauler to serve 3,400 households in the City’s Waste & Recycling collection program for the next five years. Alpine Waste & Recycling was chosen for their low prices and ability to provide current and future services required by the Golden community. Alpine currently serves more than 35,000 households in the metro area and is the largest locally-owned waste & recycling company in Colorado.

    Alpine Waste & Recycling Benefits

    • Alpine Waste & Recycling LogoA webpage just for Golden residents
    • A dedicated phone line for Golden residents.  Please call (303) 277-TRASH (8727) to speak with one of six customer representatives, trained to be able to answer questions specific to Golden’s program.
    • Automated sustainability reports, exclusive to customers, which track diversion rates and allow comparisons to other households in the area.
    • The ability to accept new materials starting later this fall. Watch for future notice that rigid plastics and formed Styrofoam will soon be accepted with single stream materials.
    • Cleaner-burning compressed natural gas (CNG) trucks with real-time GPS routing software for efficient drive times.
    New Pricing Begins September 1, 2016
    Waste Container Size Per Month
    32 Gallon Cart Super Saver $6.20
    32 Gallon Cart $7.50
    64 Gallon Cart $12.60
    96 Gallon Cart $19.25
    Additional 96 Gallon Cart $10.85
    Additional Services Per Month
    In drive pickup $4.00
    Carryout and Carryback $8.50
    Carryout OR Carryback $4.25
    Waste & Recycling City Service Change FAQs

    1. Will the days of my service change?
    No. Your trash or recycling will continue to be picked up on the same day of the week as it is currently. The time of day may change, so be sure to place your carts at the curb early in the morning.

    2. Will the pricing change?
    Possibly. Staff and City Council are currently finalizing pricing for the new service. If there is a price change, residents will be notified through a separate mailer, in water bills, and on the city website.

    3. Will I have to get new carts?
    No, the City owns the carts in the program, so please continue to use them.

    4. Who do I contact for a service change?
    Prior to August 31, please call Waste Management at 303-278-8600. Starting August 31, a new central phone number will be available, as well as email and contact information through both the City and Alpine’s websites. In August, a direct mailer with new information will be sent to your mailbox and included in your water bill.

    Waste Management Service through August

    The City of Golden currently contracts with Waste Management for the City’s residential trash and recycling services. For changes in service or customer service issues, contact Waste Management at 303-278-8600. In an effort to achieve Golden’s sustainability goal to reduce waste 25% by 2017, the City instituted the Pay-As-You-Throw program (PAYT), which works on a per container basis.

    Households are charged for each bag or cart of trash they generate, and can choose the size of trash receptacle they prefer. Citizens are, in addition, issued a 96-gallon mixed-stream recycle container, so the more you recycle, the less you pay! A green waste program is also available for customers who wish to reduce their waste even further by composting.

    For more information on Waste Management and customer options available, please download the below documents.

    General Waste & Recycling FAQs

    1. Who should I contact to change service or report service or billing problems? 
    Please contact Waste Management Customer Service at 303-278-8600.

    2. Can I put yard waste or recyclables or plastic bags in my trash cart?
    Yes, however, since this is a volume based program, any material that will not fit into the cart that you want collected on your next trash collection day must be in a 32 gal. or smaller plastic bag with a prepaid sticker on it.

    3. Are there guidelines for how my trash and recyclables should be prepared for service?

    • Place trash in plastic bags and tie them closed. Unfortunately, plastic bags are discouraged from use in the recycle carts because they become stuck in the machinery that is used to sort recyclables. 
    • Place a paper bag or two filled with heavier recyclables on top of the other recycle cart contents. This helps to contain loose papers and lighter items below the bag. Cardboard can also be used, but care must be taken not to wedge it in place so tightly that it does not allow the contents of the cart to fall into the truck. 
    • Make sure the lid sits flat and is completely closed. Do not over fill the trash or recycling cart as even if it is slightly cracked open, wind is more likely to enter and cause the lid to open completely. 
    • Do not place the carts out for service the night before they are serviced if wind is anticipated. Try to minimize the amount of time the cart is exposed to the wind.  

    4. I have a large item(s) (couch, tree limbs , rolls of old carpet, etc.) that I would like to have my house. The item is too big to fit in my trash cart, what options are there to throw it away?

    The easiest, most efficient way to dispose of a large item is to call Waste Management (303-278-8600) to arrange for a large item pick-up. The cost of this service varies according to the item(s) or the volume of material you want to have picked up. Residents are not prohibited from calling any trash or junk hauling company to have large items removed. Residents may also haul items to a local landfill or transfer station for disposal. Finally if you have the time, tools and determination, large items (excluding hazardous and other prohibited materials) may be cut up into smaller pieces and placed in your regular trash cart or plastic bags with prepaid stickers for disposal.

    5. What are the dimensions of the trash and recycling carts?

    Cart Dimensions

    Size Height Width Depth
    32 Gal 38 1/2″ 19″ 22 1/4″
    64 Gal 42 3/8″ 25 1/8″ 29 1/2″
    96 Gal 45 3/8″ 27 1/8″ 33 1/4″


    6. How can I find out if my household is in the program?
    The list of covered addresses is being compiled as quickly as possible. Difficulties in identifying multi-family residences covered by the program have delayed the finalization of the list. Please feel free to call 303-384-8183 to verify if your household is covered. 

    7. What are the fees for this program?
    Your monthly price depends on the size of your garbage cart: 32, 64, or 96 gallons. How big are they?

    EDS Waste Containers

    Waste Container Options

    Container Size Monthly Price
    32 Gallon Service $6.86
    64 Gallon Service $11.54
    96 Gallon Service $17.65
    Additional 96 Gallon Service $8.35
    32 Gallon Super Saver Service $5.68


    8. What does the service include?
    The price for each service level includes your choice of three trash cart sizes (32, 64, or 96 gallons), a 96 gallon recycle cart and twice-annual pickup of yard waste.

    9. What optional services are available?
    Customers may choose to add green waste collection, large item pick-up, or drive-in service for an additional fee.

    10. How will I be billed for service?
    After you sign up for the level of service you desire, the City will include three months of service on your quarterly water bill. Optional services will be billed directly by Waste Management.

    11. How can I sign up for service?
    Starting in June, residents can sign up through the Waste Management website or through a form included in an informational packet mailed to all residents.

    12. When will the program start?
    We anticipate that carts will be delivered in August, with service to start September 1.

    13. What if I change my mind and want a different size cart for trash?
    Waste Management will provide you with one cart exchange, free of charge, within the first 90 days of service. Additional trash cart size exchanges may be made quarterly for $15.

    14. What if I want a different size recycling cart other than the 96-gallon cart provided?
    You may select a 64 gal. cart for your recyclables.  Please check the option for a 64 gal. recycle cart on the enrollment form or be sure to tell the Waste Management customer service representative you would like the smaller size. If no selection is made, a 96 gal. cart will be provided to allow households to recycle as much acceptable material as they like.

    15. I am in a Homeowner’s Association, is my house included in the program?
    If your HOA contracts with a waste company to provide service to all of the households within your neighborhood, you are not included in the city program, although your HOA may voluntarily opt into the program at any time. If your HOA does not provide waste collection, your household is included in the program.

    16. Can my multi-family complex still use dumpsters?
    Multi-family complexes may elect to use all carts, a dumpster for trash and recycling carts, or two dumpsters (one for trash, one for recycling). Pricing will be equivalent to the three main service levels.

    17. Can I still contract with another company for service?
    Yes, residents may hire any waste hauler, licensed to operate within the City. However, if your household is included in the City waste program, you will still be billed at the minimum level of service.

    18. What if I have more trash than usual?
    Additional bags of trash will be collected when a pre-paid sticker is affixed to each bag.

    19. Where can I purchase the pre-paid stickers for my temporary extra trash?
    Stickers will be available for purchase through the Waste Management website, by visiting the Waste Management offices, and at City Hall. We hope to make stickers available at additional convenient locations.

    20. What if my home is vacant?
    Can I discontinue service? 
No, in order to maintain the lowest possible pricing, each household in the program will be billed for monthly service. You may request the 32-gallon level of weekly service if your home is vacant.

    21. What day will my trash be picked up?
    Because your collection day may change from what it is currently, you will receive a Welcome Packet that will indicate the day of the week for your service. Recyclables will be collected on the same day as your trash.

    22. What if I’ve already pre-paid for my trash service with another company?
    The City will notify all currently licensed haulers of households under the City program. If you discontinue service, you may be eligible to receive a refund. Contact your current hauler for details.

    23. What can I do with my old trash container?
    If you cannot use it for other uses such as the semi-annual yard waste pickup or gardening uses, the City will arrange for recycling of your old container free of charge. If you bought your container from a private trash company, contact your current hauler for return options, or it may have value for resale to another customer of the same company.

    24. When did Golden adopt these trash and recycling policies?
    On May 13, 2010 City Council approved Ordinance No. 1868, now codified as Chapter 4.82 in the Municipal Code, changing residential waste collection services in Golden by allowing the City to contract for waste and recycling services for low-density residential properties. 

    Any questions not answered here? Email Chris Naber or call (303) 384-8183.