Gypsum's recycle collection site at Columbine Market off U.S. Highway 6 will likely be moved and improved this year.
"We made the commitment a couple years ago to upgrade all the recycle collection sites in the valley but, through the landfill, we can't afford to do them all at once," said Eagle County Commissioner Jon Stavney. "We do about one a year."
The town of Eagle's recycle collection site is currently moving from the county fairgrounds to 1050 Chambers Avenue. That site will have three 40-yard containers and will open in about two months, said Deron Dircksen, the town's assistant engineer. The fairgrounds site will remain open in the meantime.
The plan for Gypsum's collection site is to move it to a bigger site that is owned by the town or county. Ken Whitehead, the county's director of solid waste and recycling, said the upgrades would likely include a built-in cardboard compactor unit, which would reduce transportation costs since more material could be hauled at once.
"My concern with the Columbine Market location is that we don't own it, so if we make upgrades there we could lose our investment if the owner sells or changes his mind," Whitehead said.
Howard Tuthill, owner of Columbine Market, has allowed the collection bins to remain on his property for several years. On Monday he said he wasn't aware of the plans to move the site and wanted to look into the matter further before commenting.
As for Gypsum's future collection site, the Eagle County Maintenance Service Center off Cooley Mesa Road, west of the airport, is currently the favored option. Whitehead said the cost of the move and the upgrades would be approximately $140,000, which the town might split with the county, as Eagle is doing with its project.
"We're hoping to have the site re-established by the end of summer," said Gypsum Public Works Director Jeff Shreeve. "We're trying to offer it at a nicer facility where people will use it more."
Shreeve said his department hopes to have approvals for the project from the town and county by June.
"The town of Vail (upgraded its site) a few years ago and we're following suit," Dircksen said. "The cardboard compactor will pay for itself. Right now there are three or four cardboard containers at the fairgrounds that have to be hauled three times a week."