Local residents may soon be able to take their recyclable materials to a new location.
The city of El Dorado is looking to move its recycling drop-off center a few blocks south of the current site at Lester and Columbia behind Arby’s.
Robert Edmonds, director of public works, said work is progressing to prepare a lot in the area of Liberty, Cordell and Robinson as the new site for the drop-off center.
The lot is across from Rester’s Part III Barber College and behind Barton Junior High School.
“It’s coming along. That lot’s been cleared, and the power poles that were in the way have been moved,” Edmonds said.
He said the city paid $40,000 to purchase the property, and now all that is needed is approval from the El Dorado City Council to include the remainder of the estimated cost — $120,000 to rough in the plumbing implements, erect a building and a privacy fence — in the 2018 capital improvement budget for sanitation.
The city’s Finance Committee is preparing a budget proposal to present to the full City Council.
The project to relocate the drop-off center was sparked by complaints from nearby residents about unsightly messes that are left at the center when people use it after hours.
The center sits between the St. Louis neighborhood and one of the city’s main thoroughfare and commercial district, North West Avenue.
St. Louis residents pointed out that items — many of them materials, such as furniture, years waste and mattresses, that are not accepted at the recycling center — pile up when the facility is closed and debris often blows into the street and into their yards.
City crews previously said additional help is enlisted each Monday to clear items that have been deposited at the recycling center during the hours when it is closed on the weekend.
The city has taken steps to address the issue, but city officials, neighborhood residents and Keep El Dorado Beautiful agreed that recycling operations have grown over the years, and a roomier site is needed.
The lot is small, and when we started the drop-off center, it worked out great, but now, it’s outgrown that spot,” Edmonds said.
There had been some discussion about moving the center away from its high visibility spot on North West Avenue but keeping its location centralized and convenient for citizens.
Edmonds said the opportunity arose to purchase the property behind Barton Junior High School, and after negotiations were worked out by City Attorney Henry Kinslow, the city completed the purchase.
The city rents the current site for $500 per month — a monthly rate that was raised from $250 at the start of 2016.
Edmonds said the new site will include more space, a building to store items that deposited at the center items, more dumpsters to collect recyclables after hours and a privacy fence to help keep the property cleaner and neater during after-hour drop offs.
If the 2018 budget request is approved by the city council, Edmonds said the project should take about 90 days to complete, barring inclement weather.
Items that are accepted at the city’s recycling center are cardboard, newspapers, magazines and plastics — including bottles and jugs for water, milk, soda and liquid detergent; electronic, or e-waste, items, including TVs, computers, and DVD players; and washers, dryers, and refrigerators — with the compressor removed.
The items may also be deposited at either the drop-off site or the city’s recycling plant on South Jackson Avenue.
Hours of operation for the recycling center on Lester are 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Monday; noon until 6 p.m. Tuesday - Friday; and 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturday.
The recycling plant on South Jackson is open from 6 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Monday - Thursday and from 6 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Friday.
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