Recycling Directory

On campus and in the City of Chicago, you can recycle a huge array of items—from cardboard to computers. This directory can help you learn where to recycle everything from packing peanuts to shoes. To streamline your search, we’ve listed where things can be recycled on campus (if possible) and in Chicago. Also, be sure to check the City of Chicago’s recycling directory or the Recycling Manual for the 47th Ward for additional resources. If you’re dealing with construction debris, please go here.

Pass on this directory to you friends and email us if you have any additions/edits.

Aluminum Foil and Cans

Clean aluminum foil and food containers may be placed in any recycling bin around campus or in the dorms. Also, Residential Properties recycles aluminum.


Batteries

You can recycle batteries in the bins around campus, at the following locations:

  • Regenstein Library (lobby)
  • Reynolds Club (basement)
  • Swift Hall (basement)
  • Social Services Administration (lobby)
  • Edelstone (entrance)
  • Kirsten (2nd floor)
  • Gordon Center for Integrated Science (main entrance of A & B wings)
  • Hinds (back entrance)
  • Biological Sciences Learning Center (2nd floor)
  • Cummings Hall (1st floor mail room)
  • Young Building (3rd floor)
  • All residence hall lobbies

Also at the University's e-waste drop-off locations.

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Bottle Caps

You can place bottle caps in any recycling container on campus.


Building Supplies


Carpet

There are currently no locations on campus for recycling carpet.

Shaw Floors recycles any carpet made with nylon 6 fiber.


Cell Phones

AT&T, Best Buy, Office Depot, Sprint, Staples, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless all offer drop-off recycling programs. Please browse their respective websites for more information.


Clothing and Fabric

  • Encore wil accept gently used clothing and what they can’t sell they donate to the Salvation Army
  • In the Woodlawn area, you can donate clothing to Unique Thrift Store

Cork

There are currently no cork recycling options available on campus.


Cosmetics

There are no options for recycling cosmetics on campus at this time.

Origins accepts empty cosmetic tubes, bottles, and jars from any manufacture at virtually any Origins location nationwide.
MAC Cosmetics: Back to MAC recycling program


Eyeglasses

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Furniture

You can list your furniture on UChicago’s Marketplace.

Please check with your local Goodwill or Salvation Army about recycling furniture. Most recycle a wide variety of furniture.

Brown elephant is another option.


Holiday Trees

There are no resources currently available on campus to dispose of holiday trees.

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Household Hazardous Waste

There are no resources currently available on campus to dispose of household hazardous waste.


Ink and Toner Cartridges


Junk Mail

You can place junk mail (paper/magazines) in any recycling container on campus.

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Light Bulbs

You can contact Facilities Services if you have fluorescent tubes to recycle. For other kinds of light bulbs, please refer to the sources below.


Mattresses

You can list your furniture on UChicago’s Marketplace.

Please check with your local Goodwill or Salvation Army about recycling furniture. Most recycle a wide variety of furniture.


Office Supplies

You can list your office supplies on UChicago’s Marketplace.

Please check with your local Goodwill or Salvation Army about reusing office supplies.

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Paint

There are no resources currently available on campus to dispose of paint.

Latex paint is very costly to recycle, but the empty can is recyclable. The City of Chicago offers advice about leftover paint disposal.


Plastic Bags

  • You can bring plastic bags to the drop-off boxes in Walgreens on 55 & Lake Park.
  • You can bring plastic bags to the drop-off boxes in Hyde Park Produce on 53rd & Woodlawn.
  • These stores also accept plastic bags: Jewel-Osco, CVS, Whole Foods, & Target. Please check with the location first.
  • You can search for plastic bag drop-off locations by zip code here.

Shoes

Encore will accept gently used clothing and what they can’t sell they donate to the Salvation Army.


Styrofoam

Packing peanuts can be recycled at the UPS store at 53rd and Harper.

Most other UPS stores accept styrofoam. Also check with your local pack and ship store.

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Water Filters

There are not currently any water filter recycling options on campus.

For TerraFlo filters, you can mail your filters directly to the company for recycling or find a nearby drop off location.

If your filter is not manufactured by TerraFlo, you can empty the charcoal sand into your garden or into the garbage and then place the #5 plastic container in any recycling bin.


All filters are different, so check with the recycler to find out which brands of water filters are accepted.


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