Whistler’s new waste transfer station received its first shipment of trash Monday.
Owen Carney, the owner of Carney’s Waste Systems, was on-hand to oversee operations and ensure there was a smooth transition after the move from the old site near Function Junction.
The new facility is located in the Callaghan area, south of the old site and off of Highway 99. Its massive gravel lot boasts two shiny, new buildings — one for garbage and one for recycling — and is encircled by a fence topped with barbed wire to keep bears out.
Construction equipment is still scattered throughout the site, a testament to the recent completion of the new buildings.
Work began last fall, and it appears that the new transfer station was completed just in time: Carney said the old site has already been torn down to make way for the athletes’ village.
“VANOC and the athletes’ village are putting a water main or something straight through the middle of where it was,” Carney said Monday.
At the new facility, garbage trucks are first weighed, and then directed to either the recycling or garbage drop off buildings to deposit their contents for sorting.
Carney pointed out that the new buildings give crews much more room to sort the garbage, to ensure that recyclables don’t end up in a landfill.
The remaining trash is then pushed from an elevated platform into a container waiting below, destined for a landfill in eastern Washington.
On a tour of the facility, Carney also pointed out a smaller adjacent lot at the end of the site, which will soon be home to the composting facility he recently sold to the RMOW. He said construction for the new facility should begin soon.
The Resort Municipality of Whistler built and paid for the new facilities, but Carney’s was involved in designing the station, and will be responsible for day-to-day operations.
And since compacting sites at Function Junction and Nesters will remain open for business as usual, the new site won’t have much impact on people disposing of household waste.
But waste from commercial projects or developments will have to be brought to the new facility, and at a higher cost. Now, instead of a $5 flat fee, people will pay $110 per metric tonne.
The new facility will also run on a slightly reduced schedule — from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week.