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Black Cart Program


Single family dwellings throughout Yellowknife have a standardized black cart for curbside collection of garbage. These carts replace garbage boxes and other garbage cans.

Black Cart Information

Black Cart FAQs
What is happening?

Single family dwellings throughout Yellowknife received a standardized black cart in mid-October, 2014. These carts have replaced garbage boxes and other garbage cans. Beginning the week of November 1, 2014, black carts have been used for curbside collection of garbage.

What should I do with my current garbage box?

Garbage boxes are no longer needed and should be brought to the Solid Waste Facility.

Did we miss your question? Let us know!
How will this change how I dispose of waste?

In many ways, there will be no change. For those residents only receiving a black cart in 2014, you will use the black cart for things that you normally put in a garbage bag, can or bin. The two bag limit will still apply.

The main thing that will change is where your cart is placed. In order for the mechanical arms of the collection truck to pick up your cart, it will need to be placed either on a spot on a curb or on the street, in certain areas on pick up days. Before collection begins, maps and instructions will be provided online and through mail showing you where and how your cart should be placed.

Have these carts been tested for a northern climate?

Through consultations with the City of Whitehorse, we have confirmed that these carts will be able to withstand our Northern winters. The City of Yellowknife will also be monitoring the program for improvements throughout the year.

What if my cart is stolen or broken?

If your cart needs to be repaired or replaced, contact the Solid Waste Facility at669-3406. Damages will be evaluated on a case by case basis.  The first replacement cart is free.  There will be charges for any additional carts.

How is this being paid for?

There is no additional user fee cost to residents, so you will see no increase in your monthly fees from the Curbside Cart Program.The cost of the Curbside Cart Program, which includes green and black carts, new garbage trucks, as well as an expanded compost facility, was approved by Council as part of the 2014 City of Yellowknife Budget.

How will this work with snow removal throughout winter?

Kavanaugh Waste Removal Services will be working closely with our Public Works Department to coordinate garbage collection and snow removal and ensure that collection runs as smoothly as possible.

Are these carts wildlife proof? WIll they tip over with the wind?

These same carts are used throughout Canada, including Whitehorse and Northern Alberta. In our consultations with other municipalities, wildlife (bears, ravens, etc.) have not been able to open or knock over the carts, and wind has not been a problem. If you do have problems with the cart, contact us and let us know.

What if I already have a black cart? Can I use it for collection?

All carts need to be the standardized City of Yellowknife carts with the City logo, serial number, and RFID tag on the side.  If you already have a black cart, you will not be able to use it for garbage collection.  If you would like to dispose of your cart, you can dispose of them at the Solid Waste Facility.

How many bags can I fit in a black cart? How many am I allowed?

A 240L black cart will easily hold up to three 77L bags (depending on how full they are).

If you have only received a black cart, the two bag limit still applies. If you have additional bags, place a bag tag on them and put them in your black cart.  

If you have both a black and a green cart, the two bag limit does not apply as your black cart will only be picked-up once every two weeks. You can place any size garbage bag up to 77L in the cart (i.e. smaller kitchen catchers).

Will there be different size black carts available?

At this time, only the 240L black cart is available.

We are often away from home for several days at a time, how do we manage placing and retrieving our cart if we are not home?

Carts must be placed on the road the day of collection and collected that evening. If you are not available to do this yourself, coordinate with neighbors and friends to make sure that carts are put out and returned as required.

Do I need to use black bags in my cart?

Yes, you should still use bags in your black cart, as the two bag limit will still be in place for all residences not receiving organics collection.

I didn't get a cart or got more than I need. What do I do?

Please contact the Solid Waste Facility.

Why did my pickup location change?

If you used to get alley pick-up, and now get street pick-up, this is because our new trucks require 14 feet of clearance from the top of your cart. If your power lines are too low, garbage collection has been moved to the road

If you are in a cul-de-sac, placement is now in the centre of the road. This is because the truck arms are not able to turn and reach carts placed around a semi-circle.

Why didn't my cart get collected?

If the contents of your cart was not collected, this likely means that you have placed it in the wrong location. Place the cart in the spot where waste collection officers last left it. If you are not sure where it should go, please contact the Solid Waste Facility.

What if there are cars blocking my cart? Where should I place it?

Please ensure you place your cart at least 3 feet (.9 metres) from parked cars.  This may require your cart to be placed closer to your neighbour's property. If there is not at least 3 feet (0.9 metres) of space on both sides of your cart, the automated collection vehicles will not be able to pick up your cart and your garbage will not be collected. If you are regularly having problems finding a place to put your cart for collection, please contact the Solid Waste Facility.

Can I leave my black cart on the curb or road? When does my cart need to be put out for collection?

Carts are to be stored on your property and only placed on the road for your collection day.

Carts are to be placed on the road for collection between 6pm the night before collection and 7am the day of collection. Carts must be removed from the road by noon (12pm) on the day following collection. Leaving carts on the road unnecessarily impedes traffic, road maintenance such as street sweeping, winter road maintenance and snow removal operations.


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Hours of Operation

Winter Hours effective following the Labour Day Weekend
until prior to the Victoria Day Weekend (September to May)
Monday to Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: Closed

Summer Hours effective following the Victoria Day Weekend
until prior to the Labour Day Weekend (May to September)
Monday to Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: Closed

Mailing Address & Phone Numbers

Yellowknife City Hall
4807 - 52 Street, P.O. Box 580, Yellowknife, NT X1A 2N4

Switchboard - (867) 920-5600
Mayor/City Manager - (867) 920-5634
Booking Clerk - (867) 669-3457
Municipal Enforcement (MED) - (867) 920-5630
After Hours (MED) - (867) 920-2737
After Hours (Public Works) - (867) 920-5699