New transfer station underway

Construction is underway at the local landfill so it can continue to be used as a temporary dumpsite

  • Jan. 10, 2012 12:00 p.m.

Construction is underway at the local landfill so it can continue to be used as a temporary dumpsite.

A facility, akin to a short-term holding pen, is under construction to deal with a landfill that is estimated to be at capacity by the end of this year.

Crews are building a temporary transfer station, which will allow residents to dump their garbage. But instead of the waste remaining at the dump, it will be trucked to the Pigeon Lake landfill in Cumberland.

Construction began Nov. 28, and is expected to continue until the spring when the transfer station should be operational.

“The first phase of the project has been completed which is the new recycling tipping wall,” said Jesse Lee, assistant manager of the Strathcona Waste Service branch. “The transfer station building is the next phase.”

Lee said during construction, “delays to visitors will be minimal, potentially a little extra wait time going through the scale.”

Once the transfer station is up and running, people using the dump can expect little change.

Ian Buck, the city’s planner, told council in November that the public, “will not see much change in how they use the site.” The biggest difference will be that once the transfer station is up and running, the public will dispose of its waste on the floor of the new building.

The transfer station will be 988 square metres and 11 metres high. It’s expected Campbell River’s trash will be transported to Cumberland by either April or May, for at least one year.

Leigh Carter, general manager of public affairs for the Comox Valley Regional District, which is responsible for the Campbell River landfill, said during that time it’s expected two to four trailers of waste will be transferred to Cumberland daily.

Carter said that process could be in effect for less than a year but the transfer station will have a lifespan of more than 10 years, so it can be used until a construction project to extend the life of the Campbell River landfill is complete.

That project is expected to include a mechanical stabilization of the steep earthern wall along Argonaut Road which may create the capacity needed to add five to seven years of life to the landfill.

The Comox Strathcona Solid Waste Management Board has been looking at several options for dealing with the region’s waste and a near-capacity Campbell River landfill.

A solid waste plan, drawn up by a consulting firm, has four options shortlisted: an expanded landfill in the Comox Valley; an expanded landfill in Campbell River; two landfills, one in the Comox Valley and one in Campbell River; or a waste-to-energy facility with location to be determined.

Koreen Gurak, manager of communications for the Comox Valley Regional District, said before the board makes a decision it will seek input from the public.

“We hope to start the public consultation meetings in March because there’s 14 meetings being scheduled within the region, plus there’s other opportunities to do presentations with councils,” Gurak said. “Once that’s done it will go back to the board for a final review of the public consultation process.”

“Now’s the time for people to voice their opinion on what they think we should do with their garbage.”