Albemarle Supervisors Ask for Review of Solid Waste Facilities
Albemarle County supervisors said Wednesday they need a little more information before they decide on an interim solution for a trash collection center in Ivy. This comes less than three months after they panned plans to build another center in either Keene or the Mill Creek neighborhood.
The choice right now is whether to keep the center a transfer station or downgrade it to a convenience center that would only be for residential use. Supervisors asked staff to find out who the primary users are and what the cost might be for an upgrade.
Supervisor Ann Mallek says trash is becoming a serious problem in Albemarle, and the board’s decision over the next year will be important for improvements long-term.
“We have to do a much better job with litter and with trash in Albemarle than we're doing now, and part of the complication is when we make it difficult for people to do things, sometimes the trash goes where we don't want it to go,” Mallek said.
Right now, the main concern is the collection station in Ivy, which will need to be renovated to meet state standards. The director of community development, Mark Graham, showed supervisors Wednesday the two options on the table.
One is more expensive than the other.
The center currently operates as a transfer station, but it isn't covered, leaving trash open to the elements.
"What the [Department of Environmental Quality] will look for is an enclosed building, which provides a way to keep the waste out of the weather,” Graham said.
That enclosure would be expensive to build, but there are advantages.
"With the transfer station, the advantage is that you can continue to take the commercial haulers," Graham said.
The other option would be called a convenience center, and would cost the county less.
"The advantage for the convenience center is that it's a very low-capital expense on the front end, and it's very easy and quick to put those in place,” said Graham.
Supervisors now have one year to come to that decision.
"Right now we're in an extension with the current operation at Ivy for 12 months, so we have to - our feet are to the fire here. It's time to step up,” Mallek said.
Supervisors are asking their staff to study how many commercial clients the center has, and how much an enclosed transfer station would cost.
Their decision on the fate of the station is due June 2015.
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