District looking at replacement options for Quinn Street recycling depot

The Regional District of Fraser-Fort George is looking for alternatives to operating the Quinn Street Regional Recycling Depot.

The transfer station provides a place for residents to drop off recycling, yard waste and other materials without having to go up to the Foothills Regional Landfill.

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On Thursday, the district board approved hiring engineering consultants to determine if a replacement facility is needed. The regional district has operated the facility since 2013 on land owned by the City of Prince George. 

Regional district general manager of environmental services Petra Wildauer said the district currently is operating the facility with a one-year lease agreement. That current from the city lease ends in April.

"We do have a verbal agreement (with the city) to find a solution to meet residents' needs," Wildauer said. "This is what we are hoping to determine, what we plan to do next."

The consultants will be expected to examine the city's need for the land, expansion limits  at the current site and safety factors.

The consultation process was expected to cost more than $100,000, Wildauer said.

"Really, from a regional district perspective, it's something we're not too concerned about," district director Dannielle Alan said. Alan represents Electoral Area H, Robson Valley-Canoe.

Since 2017, the City of Prince George has been planning to convert the Quinn Street transfer station to a road salt storage site. 

In a report to city council in 2018, city general manager of engineering and public works Dave Dyer said the city's road salt storage at the 18th Avenue City Works Yard is in violation of the Code of Practice for the Environmental Management of Road Salts.

"At this time, these piles are not contained and the storage availability does not meet the necessary requirements," Dyer said in his report. "In administration's opinion, the highest and best use of the city-owned property located at 1783 Quinn St. would be the establishment of a salt storage facility; thereby enabling the city to implement a crucial recommendation of the city's Salt Management Plan..."

A new, covered salt storage facility would need to be located near to the 18th Avenue Yard for efficiency, Dyer wrote, and land in the area is valued at approximately $1 million per acre. In addition, there are few potential sites available that would meet the city's needs. The transfer station is directly beside the city yard.

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