Marriottsville Road Closure

Beginning Monday, June 17, Marriottsville Road from Resort Road to US 40 will be closed to all traffic which may impact traffic to the Alpha Ridge Landfill. Please see the detour map for more detail. 

Read the press release here.



Only Howard County generated residential and commercial solid waste is accepted. Any resident using a dump truck, box truck, trailer or rental vehicle is considered Commercial and must cross the scales before disposing of material. Residents may apply for a Special Exception permit in advance.

alpha ridge landfill feature image

Residential Hours

Transfer Station
Monday - Saturday, 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Residents' Convenience Center
Monday - Saturday, 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Wood Waste Area
Monday - Saturday, 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Commercial Hours

Transfer Station
Monday - Saturday, 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Residents' Convenience Center
Monday - Saturday, 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Wood Waste Area
Monday - Saturday, 8:00 AM - 3:30 PM


Commercial Landfill Permit

FY25: July 1, 2024 - June 30, 2025

All commercial customers delivering Howard County-generated solid waste to the Alpha Ridge Landfill are required to have an active commercial landfill permit for each vehicle. The annual charge for each commercial permit is $30 and all customers must follow all landfill rules.

Alpha Ridge Landfill Operations




Alpha Ridge Landfill is Howard County's third public landfill, and the only public landfill open to accept waste. Alpha Ridge landfill was opened in 1980, and is located on a 550 acre site, of which 190 acres is permitted for landfilling.

Although all household trash collected from Howard County homes is currently being exported to a private landfill located in King George County, Virginia, residential and commercial trash is still being accepted at Alpha Ridge Landfill. A small portion of Howard County trash continues to be buried at the Alpha Ridge Landfill.

Check out our Alpha Ridge Landfill drone video tour!

  • Howard County's existing landfill opened in May 1980 at a cost of $5.25 million, including 590 acres of land costing $1.2 million.
  • From 1980-1993, the initial unlined area of 68 acres received 2.3 million tons of waste.
  • In January 1993, a 38 acre lined cell (4-10 acre sub-cells) was finished at a cost of $7.6 million, including a leachate handling system. Current landfilling averages less than 30 tons per day.
  • Peak year for filling was 1989 at 287,000 tons.
  • Another 80 acres can be used to construct lined landfill cells in addition to the 110 acres currently developed.
  • The 68 acre unlined cell has been capped, which includes landfill gas extraction and groundwater remediation systems.
  • Current annual operating cost is $10.0 million (not including debt service). This includes groundwater monitoring and treatment.
  • From Alpha Ridge Landfill, 60,678.70 tons of waste were exported to King George County Landfill in Virginia in 2021.
  • From Alpha Ridge Landfill, outgoing recyclables totaled 28,012.99 tons in 2021.
  • In addition, residential curbside single-stream recycling totaled 26,736.92 tons in 2021.
  • In 2021, Howard County achieved a 57.12% diversion rate. 

Commercial and Residential Disposal


Commercial Disposal

Cash, credit & checks (made out to Director of Finance) accepted.

All commercial vehicles delivering solid waste to the landfill are required to purchase a nontransferable commercial landfill permit at an annual charge and follow all landfill rules; no commercial vehicles will be permitted to use the landfill without a permit. Please visit our Commercial Permits tab for more information and to apply. All permits are valid for the period from July 1st through June 30th.

Since July 2017, businesses no longer need a free permit to drop-off recycling. Small businesses may only bring material that was generated within Howard County.

Residential Recycling and Disposal

The Residents' Convenience Center at Alpha Ridge Landfill offers many recycling and donation opportunities for residents and small businesses. Visit our website for a complete list of acceptable items.


Commercial Permits & Charge Accounts


FY24 Commercial Permits

July 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024

All commercial vehicles delivering solid waste* to the Alpha Ridge Landfill are required to purchase a nontransferable commercial landfill permit at an annual charge and follow all landfill rules; no commercial vehicles will be permitted to use the landfill without an active permit.

Existing Customer Application

New Customer Application

Charge Accounts

Charge Accounts are available to those customers with commercial landfill permits. The charge account allows the holder to be billed at the end of the month for landfill usage and fees instead of immediate payment at the landfill.  This account uses a deposit held in a non-interest-bearing account of the amount of 1.5 times the average monthly charges. Please complete the Landfill Credit Application form below. See rules on page 2 of the application for application instructions. Please allow five business days for the County to process your application prior to coming to the landfill to drop off material.

Landfill Credit Application

*Since July 2017, businesses no longer need a free permit to drop-off recycling. Small businesses may only bring material that was generated within Howard County. 


Rules & Fees


Hours of Operation:

Monday-Saturday: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm (closed 3:00 pm for Transfer Station bound material)

Sunday: Closed

Holiday Closings: 

New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day


Landfill Fees through June 30, 2024 (Fiscal Year 2024)


Effective July 1, 2023, the Howard County Alpha Ridge Landfill will implement the rate structure below. These rates are pursuant to Howard County Council Resolution No. 63 adopted on May 25, 2022 and subject to change.

NOTE: Only solid waste generated in Howard County is accepted at the Alpha Ridge Landfill.


Prohibited Items


The following items are PROHIBITED for disposal at Alpha Ridge Landfill:

  • ammunition
  • automobiles
  • chemical or petroleum cleanup material unless pre-approved by the landfill supervisor
  • controlled hazardous substances as defined in COMAR
  • dead animals
  • drums or tanks, unless empty and flattened or crushed with ends removed; containers previously containing hazardous waste must be emptied properly in accordance with COMAR
  • engine blocks (over 2')
  • explosives
  • hot ashes
  • infectious waste
  • liquid waste except small containers contained in household waste       
  • pathological waste       
  • radioactive waste
  • radiological waste    
  • septage waste  
  • surgical hospital waste 

This is not an exhaustive list. Please refer any questions concerning disposal of special wastes to a landfill supervisor.

Drone Video Tour

NEW! See Alpha Ridge Landfill from a bird's-eye view! Check out our drone video of Alpha Ridge Landfill and learn all our our Transfer Station and Composting Facility.

alpha ridge landfill drone video feature

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