[GRRN] swap shops reply to query

Blair Pollock (bpollock@town.ci.chapel-hill.nc.us)
Tue, 23 Feb 1999 17:08:24 -0500

North Carolina has seen quite a bit of activity in this area, the state now
gives grants to local jurisdictions to build "swap shops" at the county
convenience centers where rural residents can take their waste and
recyclables. THey can now also take reusables. The State has quantified some
results. Contact at State of NC is Jim Hickman:


Below is some information from programs for whom they have funded "swap shops".

FROM Jim's email to Blair Pollock:

"I know several communities, including Chatham Co., are using signs that
their County Attorney's have approved. The signs basically indicate that
the County never takes possession of the materials in the swap shops and
therefore, are not responsible for them. I will look into the legals that
Rowan went through with electronics and let you know what I find.

Rowan County used Rubbermaid cabinets (4'X6'). Eight of the sites had three
cabinets each and one of their sites had six cabinets. They did indicate
some problems with the construction of the cabinets, but were able to
reinforce them to meet their needs."

In addition, we here in Orange Co. NC have three salvage sheds at three of
the six county convenience sites (which are in effect mini-transfer stations
for solid waste and recycling). We are beginning a three Saturday project
this week with a graduate student intern to try to measure what flows in and
out of the salvage sheds during a busy Saturday and use that to extrapolate
how much activity there might be during a year. We'll correlate the exchange
rate with traffic count and try to determine how the items translate into
pounds during our periods of observation. We will publish the results at
some point after they are compiled.

Further, our experience over the six years has shown the sheds to be so
popular with citizens that the best stuff barely hits the ground. We feel
you should have labelled areas/shelves for different types of things, really
limit construction materials, not allow mattresses or upholstered furniture.
We relegate clothing to a thrift shop box because we have only one attendant
for the whole site including waste, recycling, motor oil,etc. We use a
20'x20'three-sided pre-fab shed with two fiberglas skylights that we
purchase and have installed by a local company for about $2,800. The sheds
have stood up recently to the strongest hurricane here in decades. They are
on concrete slabs and have interior shelving with exterior areas designated
for bikes and other larger objects. We don't have the staff to allow
construction materials at ours. We fear dumping even tho the sites are
staffed and gated.

> To: jtrnet@valley.rtpnc.epa.gov (Multiple recipients of list)
> Hello, all. We plan to create a "starter kit" for small towns that would
> to begin operating a small area to facilitate drop-off and reuse of reusable
> items at town transfer stations. The kit will contain info on costs, space
> needs, liability, etc. Are there any similar documents that we should be
> aware of before we begin creating ours or that would be helpful to us?
> in advance - John Majercak, Center for Ecological Technology (CET). >>
>End of greenyes-d Digest V99 Issue #53
Blair Pollock
Phone: (919) 968-2788
Fax: 932-2900
Town of Chapel Hill
Solid Waste Management Department
306 North Columbia St.
Chapel Hill NC 27516-2113