The city of Tuscaloosa will temporarily suspend its curbside recycling program to catch up on a backlog of trash pickup, a spokesperson said Friday afternoon.

Trash is not to be confused with garbage, the household waste that residents place in cans that are collected weekly.

Trash is yard waste and large debris set out for a different crew to collect, and the city says the amount of trash left out has doubled since this time last year as more people are at home doing yard work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the time being, recycling crews will be diverted to trash routes to assist in increased collections.

The spokesperson also said a city-wide hiring freeze will be lifted specifically for the environmental service department to fill vacancies there and address the increased demand.

Read more information from the announcement below.

Recycling drop-off sites will remain open and free of charge while curbside recycling is suspended. Additional, manned drop-off sites will also open at a different location each regular route day (Monday through Thursday) from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. to assist residents with recycling during this time. Locations are:
• Mondays – McDonald Hughes Community Center, 3101 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
• Tuesdays – Skyland Elementary School, 408 Skyland Blvd. E.
• Wednesdays – Bowers Park, 1600 James I Harrison Jr. Pkwy., and Alberta School of Performing Arts, 2700 University Blvd. E.
• Thursdays – Sokol Park, 5260 Watermelon Rd.
The Richard A Curry Environmental Complex (3440 Kauloosa Ave.) will also be manned for recycling drop-off from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

A map of regular drop-off sites and information about what items are accepted can be found at Tuscaloosa.com/recycle.