By Kent Gray

Triplicate staff writer

Within two years it appears Del Norte County residents will be hauling their trash to the south end of town.

The Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority yesterday unanimously agreed on the Hambro Site as the future home for a solid waste transfer station.

The site, just west of Hambro Forest Products on Elk Valley Road, will be the transfer point for the countys waste while on its way to distant landfills.

SWMAs Director Kevin Hendrick said the site qualified as the primary location for several reasons.

It has advantages of being an existing industrial site, said Hendrick. This is already one of the places we tell people to bring clean wood for recycling.

Recycling and processing has been going on for years at the adjacent plant and a cooperative use of those facilities might be arranged, according to Hendrick.

The entire transfer station facility, as currently envisioned, will cover approximately five acres, two of which will be paved. The main building will be 1,400 square feet with an additional 800 square feet for offices and storage.

SWMAs chairman Jack Reese said of the decision, This finally draws to a close what began many years ago.

The process of locating a transfer station began in 1994 when the closure of the Crescent City landfill became inevitable.

The landfill should reach maximum capacity by early 2003. Hendrick said the transfer station needs to be in full operation by the end of 2002.

Two contingency sites have also been established. These are Hooshnam, about a mile east of Hambro, and the current landfill location, which was previously the desired location. Both of these are still being studied for environmental impact.

One concern that developed during the meeting Thursday morning was in the wording of the study, which included a materials recovery facility being built in conjunction with the transfer station.

A dirty recovery facility would involve an automated and manual separation of recyclable materials at the station. This was deemed costly and unworkable.

A clean facility was proposed by Hendrick as a possible cost-saving incentive for the station. This would involve minimal sorting of recycling material.

It depends on costs, said Hendrick. If it costs less to operate something of this nature, rather than shipping it out, it should be an option.

Hendrick also emphasized that the public can still be heard on the subject of the transfer station location.

There will be ample opportunity for the public to express any concerns they may have, said Hendrick.