Pesky plastic trash bags. Takeout pizza boxes. Aluminum foil. Empty aerosol cans.
Thanks to a new state-of-the-art recycling complex, Arlington residents will for the first time be able to recycle a slew of new items, helping the city dramatically cut waste and divert more from landfills.
Leaders from Arlington and other area cities gathered Tuesday to dedicate the new North Texas Recycling Complex, a 90,000-square-foot center in Fort Worth that serves four counties — Tarrant, Dallas, Denton and Parker.
Arlington Mayor Robert Cluck was on hand for a ceremonial ribbon cutting.
“We are proud of our community, and we take very seriously our role as environmental stewards,” said Craig Mikolajchak, general manager of Republic Services, which operates the complex. “Our new equipment will allow us to better support our cities’ green initiatives.”
The new complex houses a technologically advanced Materials Recovery Facility, which is capable of processing more than 500 tons of mixed recyclables a day, making it the largest facility of its kind in North Texas.
Accepted items include plastics marked 1 through 7, paper products, cardboard, aluminum and more. The facility uses an automated high-speed system that moves 35 tons of materials an hour.
In Arlington, the new facility will allow residents to recycle more than ever before, said Lorrie Anderle, the city’s recycling coordinator.
“This is a big convenience factor,” Anderle said. “People were tired of having to haul their plastic trash bags to the grocery store to recycle.”
Community members, youth groups and anyone interested can visit the complex’s Learning Center and get a rare, up-close view of the recycling process, said Russ Knocke, company spokesman.
“We would love for people to come out and learn about sustainability,” Knocke said.
This is the newest expansion of Arlington’s recycling efforts. Recently, the city traded in 22-gallon recycling bins for 65-gallon wheeled carts, which have been delivered to every household in the city.
“The more we can divert from the landfills,” Anderle said, “the better for Arlington.”
Here’s a look at the items you can put in your recycling cart.