This past Monday, Waste Management
closed its free public drop-off spot for recyclables at 604 4th St., off of Fillmore Street, which had been open for more than a decade.
According to company spokesperson Lara Rezzarday, roughly 120 tons of materials were collected at that site monthly.
She cites a couple of primary reasons for the company's decision, one being a trash problem in the neighborhood, with the wind often carrying items off the unstaffed site. The other being contamination of whole bins by single items not properly cleaned before recycling, and people placing the wrong items in the wrong bins.
"It was becoming unsustainable," she says, noting a tertiary concern that gets more to the financials of the matter: The recyclables commodities market has essentially been in a slump since 2008, with regular fluctuations that make it difficult for industries to turn a profit consistently.
One solution to offset that and still get your items into the recycling stream, is to simply sign up for curbside recycling from WM or another local trash and recycling provider, an option that wasn't available back when WM created this public drop spot.
Rezzarday calls the upgraded service "a very nominal fee," though she didn't have exact figures on hand. She says to call 632-8877 for a quote. She also encourages buying products with recycled content to promote a "closed loop."
Perhaps most importantly, if you're resolved to not pay extra for curbside and continue hauling your own goods to a bin, you'll want to consult this City of Colorado Springs recycling guide
, which shows locations to drop a number of recyclable goods around the city.
Courtesty Waste Management
Even well intended efforts can get messy quickly.