DPW Adds Additional Yard Waste Pickup

Originally posted on Mayor Dolan's Blog:

Although the temperatures are freezing today, we had a warm fall, so the leaves fell later than usual. To make life easier for those who are still raking, DPW has added an additional week of yard waste pickup: Yard waste will be picked up the weeks of December 1 and December 8. In addition, the City Yard will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, November 24, and Monday, December 1. The yard will also be open on Friday, November 28, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., on Saturday, November 29, December 6, and December 13 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. December 13 will be the last Saturday opening until the spring.

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DPW Fall Reminders: Yard Waste, Thanksgiving and more

The Public Works Department would like to inform residents about a few upcoming fall reminders including Thanksgiving collection delay, DPW Recycling Center hours and curbside yard waste collection.

Thanksgiving Collection Delay
Trash and recycling collection will be delayed one day due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Therefore, Thursday’s pickup will be done on Friday and Friday’s pickup will be done on Saturday.

DPW Recycle Center (City Yard) Hours
The DPW Recycling Center (City Yard) at 72 Tremont Street will be open the day after Thanksgiving on Friday, November 28 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and on Saturday, November 29 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., for drop off of yard waste, recyclables (including plastic, glass, aluminum, paper and cardboard), books, textiles, CFL bulbs and propane tanks. Saturday, December 13th will be our last scheduled Saturday opening. The facility will re-open on Saturdays in April of 2015.

Also, November 24 and December 1 are the last two Mondays for DPW’s extended Monday hours this fall. The Center will be open from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. for all regular drop off items.

Yard Waste Drop Off

Curbside Yard Waste Collection
There will be no curbside collection of yard waste next week, Thanksgiving week. There will be collection on the week of December 1st. Although this was to be the final week for curbside pickup of yard waste, the City will be extending the collection one additional week. The last week of curbside collection will now be the week of Monday December 8th. Yard waste includes leaves, grass clippings, brush, and small branches less than 1 inch in diameter bundled and tied. Yard waste does not include dirt, gravel, sand, tree stumps and branches larger than 1 inch diameter. Yard waste must be set out by 7 a.m. in paper leaf bags or in barrels labeled “yard waste” and all bags and barrels must weigh less than forty-five pounds. There is a 10 barrel or bag maximum per pick up.

For more information and questions, please visit our website http://www.cityofmelrose.org or call 781-665-0142.

Paper Shredding Event: Nov. 15

Saturday, November 15, the Melrose DPW will hold a paper shredding event at the DPW Recycling Center on 72 Tremont Street from 8 a.m. to noon. Residents can bring one box for free and five dollars for each additional box (checks only).

Paper shredding

Other items that will be accepted include: CRT’s (televisions, monitors, and lap tops), CFL bulbs, tires, mercury items, textiles, books, dried latex paint, metal and white goods (microwaves, air conditioners, refrigerators, pipes, sofa beds, recliners, and exercise equipment). Some items have a small fee that helps defray the expenses associated with properly recycling the materials (checks only).

For more information, call 781-665-0142.

Medications Down the Drain?

The common solution for expired and unused medications used to be to pour it down the drain or flush it down the toilet. This is not the case anymore. Medicine can cause issues for water sewage systems, affect aquatic animals and even end up in our drinking water. Therefore, below are the correct procedures for medication and syringe disposal.

What to do with old medications?

  • Liquid medications: mix liquid with undesirable substance such as kitty litter, used coffee grounds or sand. Place mixture in container such as a sealed plastic bag and throw in household trash.
  • Pills: drop in the drop box at the Melrose Police Department at 56 W. Foster Street, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. No liquids allowed. For more information, call 781-665-1212.

Please recycle your empty medication bottles (remember to scratch out prescription label to make it illegible)  in your curbside recycling.

What to do with old syringes?

  • Place in a rigid container and drop off at City Hall on the ground floor during open hours, Monday through Thursday from 8:30 am – 4:00 pm and Friday from 8:30 am – 12:30 pm. For more information, call 781-979-4130.


Information provided by the Melrose Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition.

 Health Dept. Substance Abuse

Yard Waste Disposal

The DPW provides various opportunities to dispose of yard waste including curbside pickup and drop off at the DPW Recycling Center on 72 Tremont Street. The yard waste collected is composted and then available for residents to pick up for free the following spring. To ensure that these processes are done correctly, there are some yard waste guidelines for residents to follow.

Yard Waste Bag and BarrelYard waste includes leafs, grass and small brush under 1 inch diameter. Yard waste does not include dirt.

To prepare yard waste to be collected curbside it needs to be placed in barrel or bag under 45 gallons and 45 pounds. Barrels need to be clearly labeled and stickers are available at 72 Tremont Street. Brown paper bags are acceptable but yard waste in plastic bags will not be collected.

There is a ten barrel and/ or bag maximum. The bag and barrel limits are in place for the safety of the Department of Public Works employees and the capacity of the yard waste trucks.

Place yard waste on the curb on your collection day by 7 a.m. The 2014 pickups are on the regular schedule with one extra week in November to accommodate the busiest month. Therefor the upcoming pickups are on the week of:  October 27, November 3, 10, 17 (extra week) and December 1.

Yard Waste Drop OffResidents can also drop off yard waste at the Recycling Center at 72 Tremont Street Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. year-round and Saturdays 8 a.m. 3 p.m. April through December. The Center will also be open until 7 p.m. on Monday nights until December 1. This yard waste drop off is available to Melrose residents only, not commercial vehicles. Cars must have a Recycling Center sticker to enter the center. The stickers are available for free at the Resident Service Office at 72 Tremont Street.

Christmas tree pickup is the first and second week in January. Trees in plastic bags, on stands or with decorations will not be collected. Those items disturb the compost process.

For more information, call the DPW Office at 781-665-0142 or email publicworks@cityofmelrose.org.

Hazardous Waste Day: Oct. 25

Saturday, October 25, the City of Melrose will hold its annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day at the DPW Recycling Center, 72 Tremont Street.

From 8 a.m.-12 p.m., you can drop off toxic household items that are not allowed in the trash. Proof of residency is required and a small fee ($2-7) will be charged for each item. Commercial hazardous waste will not be accepted.

Since the improper disposal of hazardous waste is dangerous for Department of Public Works employees and bad for the environment, we encourage you to take advantage of this important event.

Paint products
Oil based paint, stains and varnishes, wood preservatives, paint strippers/thinners, solvent adhesives, lighter fluid

NOTE: Latex paint will NOT be accepted. Dried-up latex paint can be disposed of Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. -3 p.m., at the Public Works Operations Facility.

Fuels/auto products
Gasoline, kerosene, antifreeze, motor oil, engine degreaser, brake fluid, carburetor cleaner, transmission fluid, car wax, polishes

Gardening fluids
Poisons, insecticides, fungicides, chemical fertilizers, weed killer

Household items
Rubber cement, airplane glue, fiberglass resins, photo chemicals, chemistry set, furniture polish, floor and metal polish, oven cleaner, drain and toilet cleaner, spot remover, rug and upholstery cleaner, hobby supplies, artist supplies, mothballs, flea control products

Driveway sealer, roofing tar, swimming pool chemicals


To safely transport these items, leave the materials in their original containers. Make sure to tighten caps and lids.

Oil paint, pesticides and household cleaners should be sorted and packed separately. It’s also a good idea to pack containers in sturdy upright boxes and pad with newspaper. Drive directly to the collection site as soon as the car is packed. Never mix chemicals or smoke while handling hazardous material.


Empty containers/trash, commercial or industrial waste, radioactive waste, smoke detectors, infectious and biological wastes, pressurized cylinders, ammunition, fireworks and explosives, prescription medicines/syringes, asbestos, oil filters

Please do not throw these items in the trash. To properly dispose of them, call a private disposal company.


For more information, email Jessie Schmitt at jschmitt@cityofmelrose.org or call the DPW Office at 781-665-0142.

Swap Day 2014 – A Huge Success!

Our Second Annual Swap Day last Saturday was a huge success! The weather was beautiful and many people showed up to drop and swap items.

The event was run by the Melrose Department of Public Works and the Melrose Recycling Committee in partnership with Birth to Five and the Friends of the Library.  The items not swapped were donated to Goodwill and other charitable organizations.


Sierra and Zoe, Melrose High School students, organized the books, CDs and DVDs section as volunteers for the Friends of the Melrose Public Library.

Swap 6 Library 1


Ali Reeder, a community volunteer, helped a resident pick out clothes for her newborn.

Swap 5 B25 2.1

The kids clothes section was busy all day with families coming and going – this family picked out new shoes for their little ones.

Swap 2 B25

Mike Lindstrom and Andrew Schuyler, volunteers from Birth to Five.

Swap 4 Bike

A happy boy goes home with a new bike!

Swap 3 Rackets

Swap 8

Swap 1



Swap 9 Volunteers


Thank you to all of the amazing volunteers who helped organize and run the event! Without all of you, this event would not have been possible.


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