New Braunfels’ Solid Waste and Recycling Division recently expanded the footprint of the city recycle center at 488 South Castell Avenue, which has streamlined operations, added signage and acquired new machinery to handle increasing volume.

With grant funding from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, distributed through the Alamo Area Council of Governments, the division purchased a vertical baler, which compresses flattened cardboard into bales sold to recyclers. The center added a second compactor was added, again with assistance from a TCEQ grant from AACOG, which doubled capacity of single-stream recycling collected at the center. 

“Previously, there were two rear-load trucks to hold recyclables in the center,” said Mike Mundell, solid waste manager. “They were meeting the need but not designed for public drop-offs. Two 40-yard compactor units are now collecting recyclable materials that were collected by two 20-yard trucks. The new equipment has allowed us to collect more material, more safely.”

Signs affixed to equipment and structures clarify where drop-off items belong. Soon, pavement markings and traffic guiding will distinctly indicate the path through the center for vehicles. Traffic through the center is one-way, beginning at the entrance on Butcher Street and exiting onto Castell Avenue.

The center also accepts scrap metal and plastic foam No. 6, commonly called Styrofoam. Items brought to the center must be categorized and separated, with single-stream recycling items contained in a reusable bin or 18-gallon tote bag. Recyclables brought in dark or opaque plastic bags are not accepted, as attendants must quickly inspect items for compliance and return containers to customers for reuse.

The recycle center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon and 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. For more on the center, visit www.nbtexas.org/recyclecenter. For more on the Solid Waste and Recycling Division, including information on garbage, recycling and Green Waste collections, drop-off events and bulk pickups, visit www.nbtexas.org/swrd.

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