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Bin Standards

Villanova Waste Center Guidelines

As part of the University’s sustainability plan, we are currently working to standardize all campus waste bin systems, so they are more uniform and educational.  Studies prove that standardizing bins/signage with proper colors and infographics makes a huge difference in the effectiveness of organizations’ recycling programs, waste diversion, and recycling percentages. 

As these infrastructure changes are implemented, note the standards below:

  • Bin, Lid (when applicable), and Label Coloring:
    • Black for trash
    • Blue for mixed recycling
    • Green for food waste
    • Brown or Amber for liquid waste
    • The color scheme is in line with guidance from the EPA, as well as industry standards. 
  •   Wording:
    • Trash or Waste (as we do not send our trash to a landfill)
    • Mixed Recycling (Villanova University is a single-stream recycling facility)
    • Food Scraps or Compost
  • Labeling Design: when possible, use the suggested labels shown below. If space design does not allow for these labels, please connect with the VU Waste & Recycling Department before ordering.
  • Waste Center Sign: when possible, include the below signage near all waste centers (aka a connected trash and recycling bin combo)
  • Bin Opening and Signage Alignment: the bin labeling and opening should both be visible together. Avoid bin solutions where you cannot see labeling when looking at the bin opening.
  • Bin Size: As much as possible keep with the standard bin size indicated below, allowing for bag size uniformity, as well as having replacements available.
    • Small desk side containers should be 7 gallons
    • Common space containers can either be 16, 23, or 33 gallons (any larger and there is a risk of injury for custodial members). 
    • Larger containers for common areas or outdoor spaces can be 33 or 45 gallons.

Connected Waste Centers: studies have shown that users are much more likely to not only recycle, but recycle correctly, if trash and recycling bins are located next to each other. To ensure this is the case across campus select bin solutions that have the two bins connected or with the ability of being connected.