Downtown residents will finally get the recycling depot many have demanded for over a year - but not without a little controversy.
Squamish Council were divided Tuesday (May 16) on a vote to support a staff recommendation to place a temporary recycling depot off Cleveland Avenue behind the Pac-West building by June 1.
Lonsdale said she thought the site inappropriate because garbage would be visible from the Howe Sound Inn and Brewing Company and from a proposed condominium development directly across Loggers Lane.
"It's not attractive in appearance," she said. "People miss bins and stuff gets thrown around."
Lonsdale said she wasn't aware of complaints over the issue and said residents from Thunderbird Ridge have just as far to go to reach the Valleycliffe depot as those from the downtown.
Coun. Patricia Heintzman and Coun. Mike Jenson also said they would rather see a less visible location, but Heintzman added it was better than seeing the garbage in landfills.
Ever since the District removed the recycling depot on Main Street in 2004 to accommodate future development, many residents have expressed concern over the district's method.
"There was no notice; it just kind of evaporated," said Squamish Downtown Neighbourhood Association (SDNA) member Peter Harker.
Concerned residents also began noticing that people were now throwing recyclables into garbages. The SDNA lobbied the District to find a solution and in discussions with Pac-West staff and Carney's, an agreement was reached.
"We know at this point that because of the size constraints at that site it won't be a full-service depot," said Carney's spokesperson John French. "It may open with not all of the recycling options at the depot, and we will just monitor and work with the residents and the District of Squamish to get that site up to its full potential."
Lonsdale asked District operations director Gord Prescott what happened to discussions of a proposed blue box downtown recycling program. Prescott said no recycling company would come to Squamish for the program.
Council voted to support the recycling depot on a temporary basis with Jenson and Lonsdale opposed.
"Now we're extremely happy, mainly because it's a collaboration," said Harker.
The cost of launching the depot will be $3,500, according to Prescott, and maintenance should add very little to the operations budget.