Mulder C&D Recycling Update.
This is a summary of what I heard about the Waste Not Construction & Demolition Recycling project at the Kalamazoo Township Planning Commission Meeting May 6, 2021:
Mulder asked for and was granted a one year extension of the Township’s conditional approval of the project – pending approval by the other required groups/agencies/governments.
I heard that the business model is not addressed by the County’s solid waste program so the County formed a board to deal with this part. The group has been meeting monthly and approval could come within the next 30 days in the form of an amendment to the solid waste program.
The Kalamazoo River Valley Trail must approve the additional crossing of the trail, something they don’t like to do. The adjoining property to the south east (2 lots) has a crossing although heavily overgrown and un-kept. That right of way was issued by the railroad and the KRVT honors that as it’s the only access to that property. There is some “watershed” area on the property and it is owned by an LLC, of which Mulder is a partial owner, I believe. So Mulder would need to purchase that property or make some agreement with that LLC to develop a shared access (allowed by the Township) to all of the parcels.
It is believed that access to Ravine Road is essential as the Planning Commission deemed access to Nichols road would be unsafe and added that to the conditions of the original approval.
After all that, the plan must be approved by at least 67% of the townships and cities in Kalamazoo County.
C&D Recycling Center To Bring Jobs to Westwood
By Art Mulder
A specialized recycling center proposed for Westwood will bring new jobs, a new use for an old property, and great environmental benefits.
I’m part of this project, in partnership with Waste Not Recycling. We’re looking to build a construction and demolition (C&D) waste recycling center and transfer station on the southeast corner of Ravine Road and Nichols Road. This facility will be 20,000 square feet, with the goal of expanding another 15,000 feet in the future. We’ll employ 20 full-time workers—which will create another 27 indirect jobs in the community.
Any time a new business comes along, people have questions. We’re eager to answer them! Let’s tackle a few we’ve heard already:
What is C&D waste? C&D waste comes from construction, renovation, repair and demolition of homes, buildings and other structures, roads and public works projects. It includes concrete, asphalt, asphalt shingles, gypsum wallboard, wood, metals, bricks, glass and landscaping debris. Without recycling, those things make up at least 20% of all municipal waste going to landfills. By recycling them, we cut landfill waste and help the construction industry with lower-cost recycled materials.
What will people see or hear when the operation is running? All operations will be indoors, so there will be very little noise or visible debris. We’ll also use specialized equipment and paved surfaces to stop dust and odor. Truck traffic will be directed to and from Ravine Road. And we’ll landscape the property so it fits with the surroundings, including the trail. We want to be proud of the site in the way it looks and the way it runs.
Will you be handling any hazardous waste? No. That’s an entirely different kind of operation from C&D recycling. We’re also different from a typical scrap metal operation, which can be noisy and smelly. We want to be both a good business and a good neighbor.
Why build this in our community? The C&D recycling industry is a $7 billion enterprise, supporting 28,000 American jobs while saving 3 billion square yards of landfill space. We think our community ought to tap into that economic driver. Local builders have told us this will be a great asset. But there’s an even bigger reason. As a lifelong resident of Kalamazoo and a Westwood businessman, I know this community has the best workers, the best quality of life, and a commitment to improving the environment. I can’t think of a better home for our recycling center.
If you have more questions or feedback, we’d love to hear from you. And we’ll answer quickly! Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Art Mulder is President of Mulder’s Landscape Supplies, Inc., 3333 Ravine Road. A fact sheet about the proposed C&D recycling center follows.