Apartment Recycling Requirement

On November 1, 2016, City Council passed a resolution that requires all multi-family apartments and condominiums to provide recycling for their tenants.  The mandate is now in effect, and enforcement is through rental permits.

In order for landlords and property managers of dwellings in excess of four units to renew future rental permits, they must have recycling available to their tenants.

Staff is aware that exceptions may be necessary for a small number of properties that cannot comply with the proposed code due to lack of space.

This code change extends recycling to more than 10,000 additional households in Iowa City that have not been offered the option of onsite recycling services.

Questions?  Please contact Housing Inspection Services at 319-356-5135 or the Recycling Coordinator at 319-887-6110.


In 2012, the Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center implemented a pilot recycling program for multi-family apartments and condominiums in Iowa City. Five apartment complexes and condominium associations were selected to participate through October 2012.

Based on the findings from the pilot, a Best Management Practices Manual has been created to offer recommendations for apartment and condominium recycling. Private recycling services are readily available and affordable in the Iowa City area and City staff can help representatives from the multi-family and condominium community work through the logistics of implementing a recycling program.

The pilot project and manual were funded in part by participating apartment landlords/managers and condominium associations, the Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ Solid Waste Alternative Program.

The Iowa City Apartment and Condominium Recycling Guide is also available for tenants and condominium owners.

The City can provide assistance in the following ways:

  • City staff is available to meet with property owners and managers to assist in starting recycling programs, including
    • waste sorts to determine how much of a complex’s trash is recyclable
    • gather cost data for individual complexes
    • assist in determining best placement for external recycling containers
  • The landfill can provide assistance with education/outreach to tenants and condo owners through:
    • templates for email, postcards, letters and posters
    • printed materials for distribution, such as this single stream recycling poster
    • staff for presentations to tenants and condo owners
  • Landfill staff will work with owners and managers to bulk purchase recycling containers for individual tenants 

Need assistance or just have questions? Contact Recycling Coordinator Jane Wilch.