Aberdeen council chiefs have approved a plan to introduce £500 fines for traders who leave bins out.
The measure comes after Aberdeen City Council saw an increase in commercial bins being left on pavements.
And the new policy, which will come into force on October 1, will see a ban on the collection of waste during certain times of the day.
The city council’s current rules were put in place in 2013, but changes in recycling regimes led to a rise in the number of commercial bins in operation.
The local authority’s finance, policy and resources committee agreed to implement the policy, which aims to cut the number of trade waste bins being permanently stored on city centre pavements.
The revised policy will ban the collection of waste between 12.30pm and 2.30pm – with no containers permitted to be left on the street during that period.
It is hoped the move will help push businesses to take responsibility for clearing the streets of bins each day.
Councillor Douglas Lumsden, council co-leader and convener of the finance, policy and resources committee, said: “The issue of obstruction of pavements is a serious one, particularly for those with disabilities, which can make navigating our city streets even more difficult and potentially dangerous.
“This policy is an attempt to address those concerns throughout the city, but particularly in the centre where the issue is most prevalent.”
Penalties for businesses which don’t comply with the new policy will include a charge of £500 made for its removal, storage and return.
Any waste container not collected within five working days will be subject to a further disposal charge of £150.
Geoff Cooper, city centre manager for Aberdeen Inspired, said the organisation supports the move.
He added: “Both for the benefit of pedestrians and improving the visual appeal of the city centre, the issue of commercial waste containers has to be tackled.”