If moving or decluttering your home, the City of Iowa City encourages you to donate furniture, clothing, housewares, books, and other materials you no longer need, rather than sending still-usable items to the landfill.

With items that are no longer usable, consider if recycling or composting are options before tossing in the trash. The Iowa City Landfill sees sharp increases in the amount of trash in July and August due to residents moving as leases changeover.

By donating usable goods, recycling cardboard and other accepted items, and composting, you can have a positive impact on waste reduction. Another great resource is the Moving: Waste & Recycling Guide which provides a list of local waste and recycling resources when moving.

How to donate

Have items that cannot be recycled but are still usable? Donate them!

Pop-up Donation Drop is back Saturday, July 31, 2021, to offer convenient, no-cost donation options for community members to donate usable items they no longer need.

  • When & Where:Saturday, July 31, 2021 (two locations and times):
    • Happy Hollow Park (800 Brown St.) from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    • Mercer Park (1317 Dover St.) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • At Pop-up events, residents can:
    • Donate usable goods. A full list of acceptable donation items is available online.
    • Donate unopened food (packaged, boxed, or canned).
    • Recycle old batteries. Batteries should not be thrown in the trash, as they can cause landfill fires. Learn how to properly dispose of batteries at icgov.org/hhm.
    • Pick up educational materials and giveaways.

More information on accepted items and event details are at icgov.org/donationdrop. All usable goods donations are provided to local non-profit organizations Houses into Homes and Salvation Army, and food donations are provided to Table to Table.

If you are not able to attend a Pop-up event, there are a variety of year-round secondhand and consignment stores where usable items can be sold or donated. To see a full list of stores, check out our Iowa City Area Resale and Consignment Directory.

Recycling tips

Iowa City residents that live in single-family homes and up to four-unit buildings have access to curbside recycling. Curbside customers can recycle mixed paper, flattened cardboard, plastic bottles, and metal cans in their blue-top cart. Do not place glass, plastic bags, or Styrofoam in recycling. For a full list of accepted materials, see the updated Curbside Recycling Guide.

Residents living in buildings with five or more units should have access to on-site recycling. For more information on apartment recycling, visit icgov.org/apartmentrecycling.

The City also has a variety of drop-off locations to recycle glass and other materials. See below for a list of locations, and visit the website for a full list of accepted items, icgov.org/recycle.

  • A reminder that cardboard, and the items listed below, are not allowed to be thrown in the trash and must be recycled:
  • Cardboard: recycle on-site where you live or at a drop-off location.
  • Appliances: recycle at the Iowa City Landfill.
  • TV and computer screens: recycle at the Iowa City Landfill or East Side.
  • Batteries: recycle at battery drop-off locations.

Drop-off Locations: East Side Recycling Center, South Riverside Recycling Center, Iowa City Landfill, Coralville Recycling Center.

Composting tips

Iowa City residents that live in single-family homes and up to four-unit buildings have access to curbside composting. Curbside customers can place food scraps, yard waste, and pizza boxes in their yellow-top cart. For a full list of accepted materials, see the updated Curbside Composting Guide.

Johnson County, Kalona, and Riverside residents can also bring organic materials directly to the Iowa City Landfill’s Compost Facility at no cost during open hours.

For questions, please contact Jane Wilch, the City Recycling Coordinator, at 319-887-6110 or jane-wilch@iowa-city.org

Date of publication

Friday, July 23, 2021