TAMPA - A batch of 10,000 new garbage and recycling bins were delivered to residents Thursday, another milestone in the start of Hillsborough County's transition to an automated curbside collection service.
"It's a very large-scale rollout," county spokeswoman Michelle Van Dyke said. "We'll be delivering about 30,000 pairs of garbage and recycling bins a week."
About 260,000 homes will receive the carts by Sept. 30, when the county begins its automated service. Officials are asking residents to store the new bins on their property and continue using their own garbage cans and smaller county-issued recycling bins until the end of September.
Residents of Sun City Center, many of whom are seasonal residents, won't have new bins delivered until January.
Garbage and collection days also will change, Van Dyke said. Residents can check the new collection days for their neighborhood on pamphlets that come with the new bins.
Kim Byer, the manager of the automated collection service, delivered hundreds of new bins Thursday to northwest Hillsborough neighborhoods.
"It was very smooth," Byer said. "All the neighborhoods were excited."
The new 95-gallon, wheeled garbage carts are gray; the 65-gallon recycling carts are blue. Stickers on the bins show what items and materials are acceptable to place inside for disposal.
The 500,000 bins cost $25 million but will save the county about $10 million a year because the automated service makes garbage and recycling pickup quicker and more efficient, Byer said.