Governor Pat Quinn arrived Friday afternoon at the Naperville Recycling Center, located at 180 Fort Hill Drive, to announce the construction of a new Naperville Environmental Collection Center and to participate in a ground-breaking event.
Elected and public officials who serve Naperville stood behind the podium, providing a backdrop for Mayor George Pradel to introduce the Governor who said the $1.18 million project will create construction jobs and encourage a more sustainable use of natural resources.
“There’s no such thing as Republican recycling or Democrat recycling,” said the Governor. “It’s Illinois Recycling.”
The $900,000 state investment will help the City of Naperville build a new “one stop” environmental collection center where area residents can recycle everything from paper and plastic to fire extinguishers and prescription medications.
When completed, the environmental collection center will serve local residents and businesses to collect traditional and non-traditional recyclable items. Last year, more than 15 tons of traditional recyclable items and 51,595 gallons and 260 tons of non-traditional items were brought to the city’s existing drop-off facilities.
The resounding message during the brief ceremony was that Naperville has had a longstanding commitment to recycling.
Since 1971, the City of Naperville has provided its citizens with a Recycling Drop-Off Center. This free service is part of the city’s contract with its waste management provider. Today, the city’s drop-off recycling center is located at 180 Fort Hill Drive in the Department of Public Works facility.
In addition, back in 1986, Naperville was the first city in Illinois to offer curbside pick-up of recyclables.
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Before official remarks, Naperville Fire Department Division Chief Mark Ziemnik noted that Naperville Fire Dept Station No. 4, located at 1971 Brookdale Road, first opened in May 1990 as the site of a one-day program to recycle household hazardous waste materials.
According to Captain Rick Zakaras, Naperville’s drop-off facility opened on weekends in October 1992. Today approximately 2,300 cars arrive to drop off hazardous materials every Saturday. That number declines by half every Sunday. Typically the split is 100 from Naperville, 100 from DuPage County, 50 from Kane County and 25 from Will County, Zakaras explained.
In 2012, Naperville invested more than $430,000 at its two separate locations to improve its recycling program. Still, the demand has exceeded the city’s capacity as residents continue to place recycling at the top of its preferred services. The new facility, expected to begin before the end of 2013, will combine all services to one location for better efficiency.
The city of Naperville is investing $285,000 to go with the $900,000 grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
The new recycling center will be one of four regional collection centers of its kind in Illinois.