Green light from council sought for recycling center

Greg Masse
Post Independent Staff

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – A new proposal for a public recycling drop-off center next to City Hall is set to be considered Thursday by City Council.

The proposal calls for four recycling bins to be located in the gravel parking lot just west of City Hall – and within a can’s throw of the Glenwood Springs Police Department. Each bin would be designated for specific materials – cardboard, office paper and magazines, cans and bottles and newspaper.

Councilman Dan Richardson credited Public Works Department director Robin Millyard with the idea for the site.

“Basically, it was the process of elimination,” Richardson said.

Millyard said the site could work as a recycling center because it’s easily accessible, it’s easily seen and it’s not near any homes.

“One of the locations that had been suggested was at the new parking lot at the old (Municipal Operations Center),” Millyard said. “I think that’s counter to what we’re doing over there.”

In the new proposal, the center can be clearly seen from any window on the west side of City Hall.

“I think the more visible it is, the less likely people are to abuse it,” Millyard said.

The estimated cost for the center is $40,000, which would cover the purchase price for the bins, construction of a fence and the cost of signs.

Millyard said if the site is approved by council, he’s not sure how long it would take to get the center built. It would largely depend on how long it would take to get the containers.

“I’d like to see it up before Memorial Day,” Richardson said.

City Council first considered building a recycling center at the empty service station at the corner of 23rd Street and Grand Avenue in October 2002, but the plan was rejected.

Glenwood Springs High School Impact Club members, along with some Yampah Mountain High School students, will give the presentation to City Council, Richardson said.

“The high school kids are going to help out as much as they can,” he said.

Richardson owns Sustainable Design Concepts, a architectural consulting firm that specializes in helping architects to use and specify recycled content and materials in their projects. He has been one of the driving forces in the push to build a public recycling center.

Richardson also said he would like to see the city start a waste diversion program.

“We do have a composting program and some waste diversion elements, but we don’t have a waste diversion plan,” he said.

Waste diversion, Richardson said, consists of methods for reusing and recycling trash to minimize the material that goes into a landfill, extending its life.

“As we operate a landfill, we have a responsibility for waste diversion,” he said. “Plus, recycling is just kind of the poster child for a sustainable economy. The idea of throwing things away just doesn’t make sense.

“As I say in presentations,” he added, “there is no waste in nature, only in human nature.”

Contact Greg Masse: 945-8515, ext. 511

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