Chicago will provide recycling services citywide in 2013, Mayor Rahm Emanuel pledged.
Beginning next year Chicago will provide blue cart recycling services to the remaining 340,000 homes that don’t currently have the service, the city said in a news release. The city expects to complete the recycling service expansion by the end of the year.
The city just added 20,000 homes to the blue cart recycling service, bringing the total served in Chicago to more than 260,000.
The city is implementing competitive bidding to control costs for the projects. Emanuel said the city saved 35 percent in recycling service costs after six months of competitive bidding, for a total cost of $4.1 million. Chicago will institute a competitive bidding process for tree trimming, which currently is handled by the city’s Department of Streets and Sanitation (DSS).
“Competitive bidding for recycling services has saved taxpayer money and increased efficiencies while maintaining quality service,” Emanuel said. “These savings and efficiencies will help to make citywide recycling in 2013 a reality and further Chicago’s reputation as leader in sustainability efforts.”
The competition for the recycling business is between Houston-based Waste Management Inc., New York-based Sims Metal Management Municipal Recycling and the Chicago DSS. The city has been divided into six zones, four of which are served by private sector companies and two that are served by the city.
Chicago will disclose its recycling competition results and evaluation this summer.