Midland Dump Getting Cleaned Up

Nick Lawton
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - The Midland City Council voted Tuesday to refurbish a collection site on Smith Road and Veterans Airpark Lane that has become a 24-hour dumping site.

It's meant for tree limbs, leaves, stumps and dead firewood. What you don't expect to see is garbage, carpets and car tires.

"It shows me that there's abuse of the yard waste site," Doreen Womack, Director of Keep Midland Beautiful, said.

It gives Midlanders not only a place for their yard waste but an opportunity for it to be re-used into fertilizer.

"If you're going to take all of the yard waste that's brought out here and make it into mulch or into compost, it needs to be clean," Womack said. "And so when people are bringing Styrofoam or bringing couches or tires or whatever, when they go through the chopping process, that just contaminates everything."

The only waste that is supposed to be in the site is yard waste, but when NewsWest 9 arrived on scene we saw spare tires and car fenders littered across the ground.

So on Tuesday the City Council voted to appropriate more than $50,000 to Parkhill, Smith & Cooper, Inc., who will find a contractor to refurbish the site and turn it into a structured collection facility.

The total project is planned to cost $600,000.

"To develop a site that will be more aesthetically pleasing," Midland Deputy City Manager, Tommy Hudson, said. "A site that will be more functional, and more safe for our citizens and those that we actually serve here."

The main differences will be giving the site regular hours, manning it with personnel to make sure nothing illegal gets dumped and designating specific areas for different items.

It also gives Midlanders a chance to keep their city clutter-free.

"The key is diversion, keeping as much as we can out of the landfill," Hudson said. "This really works with our bulky item pick-up. The alleys there, you see sofas and different things. We're trying to divert that to make our alleyways clean and really the primary object is to make Midland a beautiful place."

"Building a facility out here that's manned, that has regular hours, that has a gate that is locked during the times that it's closed. That just really makes sense," Womack said.

The plans for the facility will now be drawn and presented to the Council at their next meeting.