September 5, 2002
COUNTY CONSTRUCTION & DEMOLITION RECYCLING PROGRAM WINS TOP AWARD
Charlotte, NC – Mecklenburg County's Construction & Demolition Recycling Program received the top recycling award from the nation's oldest and largest solid waste management association at its annual conference in Wilmington last week.
Janis McHargue, president of the North Carolina chapter of SWANA (Solid Waste Association of North America) presented the "Recycling Program Award" to Mecklenburg County for establishing "an innovative, aggressive recycling program …recognized as a leader in the solid waste field by the state of North Carolina."
"Mecklenburg County saw the need to be aggressive about recycling the massive amounts of building waste generated each year. In 1999, we launched the C&D recycling program, and even though it's a relatively new program, we've had some major successes with our partners in this effort," said Bruce Gledhill, Director of Mecklenburg County Solid Waste.
In 2001, the County teamed up with Bovis LendLease - one of the world's largest construction management firms – to recycle the waste from the $22 million Aldersgate Retirement Community project. This required Bovis to work with more than 40 subcontractors and about 35% of waste material at the site was reclaimed. Mecklenburg County also partnered with local homebuilder Portrait Homes to recycle construction waste at several townhouse projects.
Another success story is Central Piedmont Community College, where 22,000 square feet of office space was torn down last year. The County worked with Linda Construction to recycle nearly 80% of the demolition waste from the project.
"It may be difficult to imagine, but for every 2,000-square-foot house built, 8,000 pounds of construction waste is generated. Multiply that by the number of new homes built every year and that is what we are trying to keep out of the landfill," said Sandee Campbell, the County's C&D waste reduction specialist.
The C&D Recycling Program is just one part of the County's 10-year plan to reduce waste going into landfills by 23 percent.