I am someone who always does my best to avoid single-use plastics and recycle items as often as I can. However, living in an apartment complex means that recycling services aren't always offered. So, what do people do?

It turns out there's a public recycling center right here in the Kalamazoo area.

On Kalamazoo's Reddit user time4clock said,

I just recently moved to Kzoo a few months ago and am very environmentally conscious of my carbon footprint. Unfortunately my apartment complex does not have a place for me to recycle my plastic or paper trash. Is there somewhere where they have recycling containers where anyone can put stuff in?

I also live in a complex that does not offer recycling so I was happy to see answers in the comments.

User Upper_Tax_9433 wrote: Republic Waste has a facility near Portage where you can drop things off. 3414 Gembrit Cir, Kalamazoo, MI 49001

Located in Texas Township, Republic Waste does indeed offer public drop-offs for recycling. Here's what they accept:

  • newspapers, magazines, catalogs
  • metal cans
  • plastic bottles
  • colorless, brown or green glass

And more. They also offer pickup for hazardous items like electronics, batteries, etc. You can see a full list of what they'll take to recycle as well as their hours here.

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What about styrofoam?

Styrofoam seems to be the thing that most recycling centers don't accept. Thankfully, someone in the Reddit comments had an answer for that as well.

User lord_nerdly commented: Additionally, most places that do recycling around here don’t do styrofoam, but there is a group doing collections 4x this year, next one is on Oct 30. They take items labeled 6 only.

The group lord_nerdly is referring to is Kalamazoo's Environmental Concerns Committee. For 2021, they have one recycling event left on the last Saturday of October. Anyone is welcome to drop off as much of the accepted recycling materials as they want. Here's what's accepted according to the Facebook Event page:

  • Foam labeled with a 6 symbol only (food containers must be wiped clean)

What's NOT accepted:

  • Straws or lids
  • Packing peanuts
  • Sheeted insulation

The event will last for three hours, from 10am - 1pm, at Mayor's Riverfront Park. Find more information here.

Now, if you're someone who is look to completely eliminate waste in your life/home you'll be glad to know that we have Michigan's first zero-waste shop right here in Kalamazoo. Bee Joyful, located downtown, has everything you need for a zero-waste lifestyle. Plus, the owner, Jessica, creates phenomenal Tiktoks too. Check her out below:

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