A Caring Community Embraces Sustainability: Laurel, MD

It all Started with a Cleaner City

The City of Laurel, MD first deployed the Bigbelly solution in 2014 as an effective way to manage waste in the downtown area and City parks. The City aimed to contain open waste, eliminate windblown litter from their public spaces, and reduce pests in the local areas.

Bigbelly High Capacity Double Waste Recycling
Laurel’s initial Bigbelly deployment included HC5 SC5.5 Double Kiosks, which combine a High Capacity solar-powered waste compactor with a Standard Capacity non-compacting recycling bin. (Learn more about Bigbelly multi-stream Kiosks here).  These Bigbelly Double Stations allowed the public to dispose of waste in a contained bin while providing a convenient recycling interface beside it, encouraging recycling behavior and improving diversion.

Embracing Sustainability: Community Education & Engagement

Bigbelly High Capacity Trash Message PanelAs Laurel pursued community-wide sustainability initiatives, the City saw value in deploying educational messaging in highly-visible public areas. The City chose to utilize Bigbelly’s graphic wraps and message panels for public communication, as bins were deployed strategically in high-traffic locations and were already a core component to Laurel’s recycling & sustainability initiatives. Bigbelly wraps & messaging were designed by the City of Laurel’s Environmental Programs Office and the Department of Public Works. The Green Living Resource page is a hub for residents and businesses to explore and support Laurel’s sustainability initiatives, track progress, and get involved. (Learn more about Laurel’s Green Living resources

Leveraging Bigbelly’s CLEAN Software Platform for Smarter Waste Management

Using Bigbelly’s CLEAN Software Management Platform, the City began to track the volume of waste and recycling disposed by the public, as well as single-stream recycling diversion.  The City leveraged CLEAN to improve bin management, using Alert monitoring & Service information to better maintain public space waste infrastructure.


Upgrading the Bigbelly Footprint in 2021

Starting in 2020, Laurel initiated a citywide rebranding, with the new Bigbelly wraps as a canvas. In 2021, with the support of Mayor Craig A. Moe and funded by various city divisions, Laurel expanded their Bigbelly footprint in, deploying additional HC5 SC5.5 Double Stations wrapped with fresh sustainability artwork and side message panels. The waste bin facelift included new wrapped stations, as well an aesthetic wrap update to all existing Bigbelly stations. Side message panels on Bigbelly bins highlight community events, sustainability goals, and educational content. Laurel saw the value in communicating information about events & PSAs across one part of the city to another, and Bigbelly side message panels became the City’s go-to medium.

“Our new and improved Bigbellys are a great addition to our long-term sustainability plan – with the new wraps, the ease of use with the foot pedal and the message panels – we are able to promote recycling, litter free zones and bring attention to “green” initiatives in the City all while bridging the gap between the older and newer parts of the City,” says Michele Blair, Environmental Programs Manager at the City.
READ: City of Laurel Unveils New Recycle Bins for America Recycles Day

Bigbelly High Capacity Foot Pedal2022: The Next Phase: Bigbelly Expansion

This year, Laurel has already deployed five new Bigbelly HC5 SC5.5 double stations, with three more on the way, and more to come in the next 5 years.  The City is focused on enhancing their public spaces on Main Street, including public event spaces like farmers markets, parks, historical sites, and trails.

The City’s initiatives represent the potential of communities large and small across the US: the drive to develop, modernize, and transform their spaces for residents, visitors, and businesses.  


Links to Laurel Articles:

Bigbelly Waste & Recycling SolutionHC5 Single - Waste Black - Msg Panel Foot Pedal-1

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