PRINCE RUPERT, B.C. -- The City of Prince Rupert has postponed the launch of its new curbside recycling program to January 1st 2022.

The program was initially supposed to roll out in the first week of September, but a press release from the city said it faced many challenges in developing the service, including COVID-related delays, scheduling conflicts and technology challenges.

“Our Department wants to provide the community with the most efficient and effective weekly solid waste and recycling program with the least amount of service interruptions,” said Richard Pucci, director of operations and intergovernmental relations.

“At this point, I do not believe that our program is ready to launch, so our Department will use the coming months to streamline the rollout process. We want this program to be scalable and adaptable as we move to increase the amount of recyclables and decrease the amount of waste from each household. It is important that this program can evolve over time and, when possible, include a curbside organic stream. We understand this is a slight setback, and the community is eager and looking forward to this new service; however, in order for it to be successful, it needs to be ready.”

Over the next four months, the operations department will soft start the program, practice routs, launch a new reminder app, and complete their new solid waste bylaw so that it reflects the inclusion of curbside recycling.

The city is also asking residents to start using the new grey garbage bins provided to them by the city on September 1st. Residents are also advised to look out for future messaging on the program and announcements for trial pick-up runs on streets.