Paper Recycling at Lexington Sidewalks

Paper recycling is back on Lexington sidewalks, Mayor Linda Gorton said.

Starting today, paper will once again be accepted in curbside recycling carts and mixed recycling dumpsters. In another step forward, cartons, such as stock cans, milk cartons and juice cans, can now be recycled.

“We missed the convenience of being able to recycle paper curbside,” Gorton said. “Now the machinery at the Lexington Recycling Center has undergone a $4.2 million upgrade, and we are ready to begin.”

New equipment and upgrades to existing devices will allow the recycling center to:

  • Sort curbside paper more efficiently and produce higher quality paper.
  • Increase the capacity of the center to produce higher quality recyclable materials for sale.
  • Use optical sensors to better sort plastics.
  • Sort glass earlier in the process to reduce property damage from broken glass.
  • Transport material more efficiently with a new conveyor belt layout.

In addition to the town’s investment in improved equipment, the Carton Council has provided the town with a grant that enables it to recycle the cartons.

The city will continue to collect recyclable paper from the seven yellow bins scattered around Lexington. The paper-only program will be evaluated after several months to determine if it still adds value to the city’s overall recycling efforts. Since January 2021, Lexington has collected more than 6,154 tons of “clean” paper from the yellow bins, or more than 324 tractor-trailer loads.

The Recycling Center now accepts aluminum and steel cans, cans and lids; #1 and #2 plastic bottles, jars and jugs (caps); paper; cartons (corks); glass bottles and jars; cardboard; and cardboard. Materials placed in recycling carts and dumpsters should be clean, dry and loose. Recyclable materials should never be bagged.

A downloadable pamphlet on acceptable materials is available at

The Lexington Recycling Center serves communities in central Kentucky. It is important that people who recycle in Lexington and partner communities recycle properly. Recycling is local. Unwanted materials can damage equipment and endanger employees. For more information, visit

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