Downtown Kalamazoo recently installed 25 Bigbelly smart, double-station waste and recycling bins. When I first heard about these high-tech trash and recycling bins, I thought, this is something Flint really needs.

What is So Special About the Bigbelly Smart Waste & Recycling System?

These double station waste and recycling bins are solar powered waste units that you would normally see in bigger cites, schools, parks, shopping malls etc.

When people throw away their trash, a sensor measures capacity and then a compactor presses it all down. This allows the unit to swallow up 8 times more waste, compared to a traditional garbage can. Once the unit fills up, it sends an email notification saying how full it is and when it will be ready to be emptied.

The new bins are expected to obviously keep the city cleaner but will reduce costs, collections, and CO2 emissions as well.

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According to MLive, the installation of the bins marks the introduction of the first downtown-wide recycling program. Since installation, nearly 50% of all collections have been diverted to recycling.

Kalamazoo Downtown Partnership Communications and Marketing Manager Meghan Behymer:

We are pleased to announce the launch of downtown’s new Bigbelly waste and recycling program. By deploying 25 smart Bigbelly systems, downtown is moving forward with technology that results in a cleaner, more welcoming and environmentally-friendly community core.

These smart bins look so much nicer than a traditional can that normally has garbage overflowing out of it. They look clean, sleek and kind of futuristic.

The units are a bit on the pricy side though as each one costs between $4-5k. I'm sure it pays off in the long run though.

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