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Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center

3900 Hebl Avenue ::: Iowa City, Iowa 52246 ::: ph 319.356.5185

Iowa City Landfill

Ron Knoche
Public Works Director

Dave Elias
Landfill Superintendent

Jennifer Jordan
Recycling Coordinator

7 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Saturday
Closed on major holidays and windy days

Take our Curbside Recycling Survey!


Spotlight Interview

This video features Landfill Superintendent Dave Elias speaking about the challenges of managing the Iowa City Landfill.

Watch the Interview »  

Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center 

The Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center serves Johnson County, Kalona and Riverside. Each year, the landfill takes in about 125,000 tons of trash. Trash is landfilled according to stringent federal and state regulations to ensure that environmental protection is in place.

The landfill has been at its current location since 1971. In total, the landfill is about 400 acres in size, about half which contains buried trash. Remaining land is used as a buffer for surrounding properties and wetlands.

The Iowa Waste Reduction and Recycling Act was legislated in 1989 and banned several items from Iowa landfills, including yard waste, tires, lead acid batteries, appliances and oil. This initiated recycling programs for these items that are still in place today.

For information regarding the Landfill fire in 2012, please see "Iowa City Landfill Fire Information & Updates" on the home page of our website.

Environmental Management System

The Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center is committed to providing the essential services necessary for the health, safety, and welfare of our employees, customers, and community in a manner that respects the environment and promotes sustainable measures. The Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center is designated by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources as an Environmental Management System. EMS focuses the landfill on continuous improvement in six key areas set up by the Iowa State Legislature:

  • Yard waste management
  • Household hazardous waste collection
  • Water quality improvement
  • Greenhouse gas reduction
  • Recycling services
  • Environmental education 

 Additional information on EMS.


To take your own trash to the landfill, please separate trash from appliances, electronics, yard waste and recycling.  Please cover your loads to ensure that items do not blow out. 

Use lane #2 at the landfill; when it's your turn, pull up to the window (in the silver silo) and let the scale master know what you have.  The landfill accepts cash, checks, Mastercard and Visa.

Iowa City residents:  $3 for any garbage load less than 140 pounds; approx. $0.50 for each additional 20 lb. over 140 pounds. Charge per ton: $38.50.

Non Iowa City residents:  $3.25 for any garbage load less than 140 pounds; approx. $0.50 for each additional 20 lb. over 140 pounds. Charge per ton: $43.50.


  • Appliances - $12.50 per appliance; $1/cu. ft. for large commercial appliances
  • Asbestos (Friable - $105/cu. yd.; Non-friable - $105/ton)
  • Petroleum contaminated soil - $43.50/ton (3 ton minimum)
  • Tires - $0.07 per lb ($3 minimum)

Hazardous Waste

Please see www.icgov.org/hazardouswaste for more information on how to properly dispose of household hazardous waste such as paint, fluorescent tubes and CFLs, cleaners, garden chemicals and much more. See www.icgov.org/cfl  for a list of places in Johnson County that accept CFL bulbs for proper disposal.

Electronic Waste

Please see http://www.icgov.org/?id=1613 to learn about recycling electronic waste and small appliances. 

Yard waste

Yard waste, including tree trimmings, grass clippings, leaves, etc., was banned from Iowa landfills in 1988.  Residents and businesses may NOT put yardwaste in with regular trash.  It must be kept separate from trash; the landfill can accept yard waste for composting. 

  • Free disposal to Iowa City and County residents
  • $24 per ton for commercial businesses

Compost and Wood Chip Mulch

The Landfill and East Side Recycling Center will have a small quantity of compost available beginning Wednesday, March 25. This page will be updated when the supply is gone. 

The Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center produces Iowa City Community Compost from yard waste from around Johnson County. When available, the compost cost $20 per ton with a $2 minimum. We can load your truck or trailer with an endloader; if you want smaller amounts, please bring a container and a shovel to load yourself.

The landfill also produces wood chip mulch, which is $10 per ton with a $2 minimum.  We can load your truck or trailer with an endloader; if you want smaller amounts, please bring a container and a shovel to load yourself.

Used Motor Oil Disposal

Used motor oil is accepted at no charge at the landfill drop-off building. No appointment is necessary. Please leave your containers on the shelf on the west wall.

Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs and Tubes

Compact fluorescent bulb and tubes can be recycled at the landfill during regular business hours by Johnson County residents--no appointment is needed. For a list of other locations around the community that can take residential CFLs (but not bulbs) for recycling, please see www.icgov.org/cfl.  Businesses with tubes or CFLs should call the landfill at 319-356-5185 for more information and pricing.

Educational Opportunities

Looking for a speaker to talk about waste reduction or recycling? Or maybe your class or group would like to take a tour of the landfill. Each year, landfill staff members talk to thousands of people about what we do at the landfill and how residents can reduce their waste. Watch for us at Earth Day celebrations, Rummage in the Ramp, Farmers Market, the Iowa City Public Library and more! If you would like someone to talk to your group or set up a landfill tour, please contact the Recycling Coordinator at 319-887-6160 or jennifer-jordan@iowa-city.org.

Upcoming Events 

Please see the East Side Recycling Center page at www.icgov.org/esrc for a list of upcoming environmental events in the community. 

Commonly Requested Documents

Curbside Recycling Guide (January 2015)

Iowa City Area Resale and Consignment Directory(2014)

 View the Composting Guide



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