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Construction Site Recycling
Construction and demolition activities generate 30-40% of the materials landfilled each year from Fort Collins. However, many of these materials could be recycled or reused. Recycling and reusing construction and demolition materials saves landfill space and reduces our community’s greenhouse gas emissions. Successful construction and demolition recycling programs are necessary components in helping the community meet its zero waste and climate goals.
Since 2012, the City of Fort Collins Building Code has required certain construction and demolition projects to recycle specific materials.
Building Code Requirements
NEW CONSTRUCTION, ADDITIONS AND REMODELS
All new residential construction, new commercial construction over 2,500 sq/ft, and additions or remodels over 2,500 sq/ft (commercial or residential) must recycle the following materials:
- Concrete and masonry
All demolition projects (commercial or residential), excluding interior only demolitions below 1,000 sq/ft, must recycle the following materials:
- Asphalt, concrete and masonry
When possible all remaining materials such as doors, windows, cabinets, fixtures and wood should also be recycled or salvaged.
All materials should be processed to safely remove all asbestos and lead paint contamination.
How to Comply
You can choose to either hire a full-service hauler to collect all trash and recyclables or may choose to haul materials yourself to an appropriate recycling location. Information on local hauling companies, salvage and deconstruction businesses and recycling facilities can be found on our Construction & Demolition Debris Resource Sheet.
AT THE START OF THE PROJECT
- Submit your initial Construction Waste Management Plan or Demolition Waste Management Plan at time of permit application, listing who will be responsible for hauling each material and where it will be taken.
DURING THE PROJECT
- Post your Waste Management Plan at the job site.
- Implement your Waste Management Plan and ensure all materials are recycled as required.
AT THE END OF THE PROJECT
- At the end of a project or whenever a certificate of occupancy is being requested, you will need to resubmit your waste management plan with all fields complete, including total tonnages of materials disposed of, and signatures from both you and your hauler(s).
- For projects with many certificates of occupancy completed on a rolling basis, please contact Jonathon Nagel: 970-416-2701 or am5hZ2VsQGZjZ292LmNvbQ== to create an agreed-upon plan for document submission.
- Documentation required to be submitted with the final Waste Management Plan:
- A job site summary or invoices from your hauler(s) listing the site address, services provided, and total tonnages of materials disposed of.
- All disposal tickets for self-hauled materials.
- Explain the recycling requirements to all employees and subcontractors that will be working on your jobsite and show them where the containers for each material are located.
- Add compliance with your site's recycling plan into contracts with subcontractors.
- Clearly label all containers in both English and Spanish on all sides of the container.
- Co-locate trash and recycling containers to provide easy and equal access to all containers.
- Work closely with your hauler(s) to understand their requirements of what can and cannot be included with each material.
- Avoid mixing trash and recyclables for separation later; instead, use multiple small containers for each material wherever work is being performed, and then empty small containers into large bins when full.
- Regularly inspect dumpsters to ensure only the correct materials are in each container. If materials are placed in the incorrect container, ask the responsible employee(s) or sub-contractor(s) to remove the incorrect materials and place them in the correct container.
- I do not have space on my jobsite for five different containers, what should I do?
Most likely you will not need all five at once. Concrete will be most prevalent during foundation work, wood most prevalent during framing, and cardboard during the interior finishes, etc. If space is not available for multiple containers, or you are not producing enough of each material to justify a container, consider stock piling the material until you do or self-haul it to a local recycling specialist. Find options in the Construction & Demolition Debris Recycling Resources sheet.
- How will compliance be enforced?
Environmental compliance inspectors will visit job sites throughout the duration of a project to ensure the requirements are being met and to discuss any issues found with the site superintendent. The hauler will also confirm compliance with the final Construction Waste Management Plan (CWMP) and documentation.
- What are the penalties for not complying with the requirements?
Failing to follow or submit your CWMP could include penalties of over $2,500 per day of the violation and up to six months in jail. A summons will be issued to the site superintendent if a violation is not corrected after receiving a notice of violation warning.
- One of my loads was rejected by the recycling facility and instead sent to the landfill, what should I do?
Often recycling facilities will either reject or charge extra for loads that contain too many unacceptable materials. Consider hosting a jobsite or tailgate meeting to discuss the instance with your employees and subcontractors. A site with regularly rejected loads will not be considered to be complying with the requirements and could be subject to a violation. Keep track of any rejected loads to include on your final CWMP.
- What types of wood can be recycled?
Any type of wood that is NOT painted or treated should be recycled.
- Are nails okay in my wood recycling?
Yes! Small diameter nails/screws are accepted in your wood recycling.
- Is dirt acceptable with my concrete and asphalt recycling?
Dirt should be kept to a bare minimum. Use caution at concrete wash out pads to avoid contaminating the container with too much dirt.
- Can concrete with rebar or wire mesh be recycled?
Check with your hauler (or the recycling facility themselves if self-hauling) to verify their requirements.