"You asked, we listened," said Bangor City Councilor Ben Sprague on social media this week as he announced that the City of Bangor has decided to re-open the Maine Avenue facility for cardboard disposal.

In the last 2 years, Bangor has gone from sorting it's recycling and trash, to a zero-sort model. And then this summer, the City implemented the new residential curbside waste collection program in which each household was issued a 96 Gallon bin to dispose of all their waste and recycling. The bins are collected weekly by automated trucks. Two weeks after folks started officially using the bins, the cardboard collection facility on Maine Avenue was closed, as s cost-saving measure of the new program.

Now, while 96 gallons is quite a bit of room, many residents were running into an issue with cardboard waste specifically. Under the new program, all waste--cardboard included--must fit inside the bin, with the lid closed. This may not have been much of an issue prior to the pandemic, but with more and more families opting to buy online, rather than risk superfluous trips to the store, the amount of cardboard waste created by most folks in the area increased significantly--to the point that trying to fit that waste into the new 96 Gallon bins became next to impossible.

Many citizens voiced their concerns, calling for the City to provide a solution for cardboard overflow problem. Numerous folks called for the reopening of the Maine Ave facility to handle the increase in cardboard. And it seems, from Sprague's announcement, that those voices have been heard.

" This will ONLY be open to Bangor residents. Sorry to others, but disposal is expensive and we can't afford to pay for everyone."

As a Bangor resident myself, my family (of 5 ) generates our fair share of garbage. But we've been able to fit it all in the bins, with the exception of the cardboard. Even breaking it down to its smallest size, we have had to make separate drips to the dump in the last 2 months just to dispose of cardboard that wouldn't fit inside the bin. So this is very welcomed news round these parts!

Sprague says the city estimates the cost of reopening the facility will run about $17,000 for the year and that the City Council will be looking for ways to reduce that figure.
He also mentioned that it would take a week or two to get everything in order to reopen the building, so he advised Bangor citizens to hang on to their cardboard till then.
While Bangor Public Works did not have all of the details, as of yet, on how the reopening will work, we're told there will likely be a dumpster opened up on site to accommodate the cardboard disposal.
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