Pamplin Media Group – Garbage, recycling dump to move out of Oregon City?


New Metro South Transfer Station could be located in Gladstone, Johnson City, Milwaukie, Happy Valley or Southeast Portland

PMG PHOTO: JONATHAN HOUSE - Tony White pushes collected trash into a compactor at the Metro South Transfer Station in Oregon City.Metro officials say that Oregon City’s 30-year-old garbage and recycling transfer station can no longer safely accommodate its more than 250,000 annual customers.

Regional governmental plans to improve the Metro South Transfer Station could involve relocating the new, state-of-the-art facility elsewhere in Clackamas County, or even in Southeast Portland. After hearing from community stakeholders, Metro councilors expect to determine the preferred site and new transfer station services in late 2020.

Metro staff determined the possible area for a new transfer station based on access to  major highways  and transportation corridors to the north and east. Metro’s urban growth boundary and the Willamette River serve as west and south boundaries to the study area.

COURTESY PHOTO - Metro officials released this map of the study area for the new Metro South Transfer Station.Jurisdictions within the study area include Gladstone, Johnson City, Milwaukie and Oregon City, as well as portions of Happy Valley, Southeast Portland and unincorporated Clackamas County. Permitting and

construction of new facility is slated for 2023-25.

Long lines for customers have led to extensive delays at peak periods and off-site traffic congestion near the current transfer station on Oregon City’s Washington Street. Unsafe conditions because of too many competing uses in the current center’s limited space result in lower rates of recycling, Metro officials say.

“Recycling and reducing waste defines us as Oregonians,” said Roy Brower, Metro interim waste prevention and environmental services director. “This new facility will be a model for best practices and new ideas while supporting jobs and being a good neighbor.”

Metro’s new facility will be designed along the lines of the new Factoria Recycling and Transfer Station in Bellevue, Washington, with an enclosed building for the collection of garbage and recycling that minimizes noise, dust and odors. A planned new multi-use facility would provide people with education about reducing their environmental impact, create family-wage jobs and provide community amenities, officials say. A new facility would incorporate solar skylights to reduce energy demand, rainwater harvesting technology to save water and a household hazardous waste building with advanced environmental protection features.

In partnership with Unite Oregon, Metro last month convened a new group of community members to advise regional officials on the new recycling and transfer center. Due to COVID-19 impacts, meetings are taking place through video chat, including a meet-and-greet session in July.

The advisory group’s first official meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 13.

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