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Developers will be required to spend more to accommodate waste collection in Hamilton

Developers will be required to spend more to accommodate waste collection in Hamilton

As Hamilton City Council prepares to debate urban boundary expansion, one aspect of urban intensification has surfaced—garbage collection. A staff report says that with the number of ultra-high condo developments and newer building styles such as stacked townhouses, there needs to be design changes in new developments going forward to accommodate waste collection.

One recommendation would see three waste chutes on each floor of a high-rise, rather than one, to allow the diversion of organic waste from paper and containers. The report notes that apartments have been notoriously low when it comes to waste diversion—a problem that will only get worse as more high rises are built to meet intensification targets.

Among the other changes would be the requirement for new developments to have enough waste storage space for eight days. There would also be new rules to allow large waste handling vehicles to execute turns, or preferably, pick up waste without having to reverse. Staff also are requesting the power to approve or deny the use of private waste services in new developments.

Some of these changes are being met with opposition from the development industry. The West End Homebuilders Association suggests the new rules would actually run the risk of “limiting intensification potential on economically viable sites.” On the issue of increased turnaround requirements for garbage trucks the association says, “it creates challenges for tight infill redevelopment sites.” The builders group is also opposed to the size of the storage sites, writing, “for higher density developments, especially condo towers, providing enough space for 8 days of waste storage requires a significant amount of room dedicated solely to waste. In our member’s experience, this is also not a desired length of time to store such a significant amount of waste on site. In these cases, our members have often opted for private pickup to reduce both the length of time the waste is stored in the building and the amount of space required for storage. In cases of high-density developments, the requirement to meet the guidelines will significantly limit the unit count of a building, and as such allowances for private pickup should be made.”


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