Transfer Station improvements project FAQ
Why do we need a transfer station?
The Georgetown Transfer Station, 250 W. L Walden Road, provides a cost-effective, efficient method for managing our waste by reducing the number of collection trucks and staff on the roads. Each truck goes out twice to complete a route. Once the truck fills up, it goes to the transfer station to empty its load, then it goes back out to finish the route. Without the transfer station, the truck would have to go directly to the landfill, which is about 90 miles away. That would increase the number of staff and trucks needed to complete the same number of collections, which would increase the residential rate. Additionally, fewer trucks on City streets also reduces wear and tear, traffic congestion, and residents intermingling with larger vehicles.
The transfer station also allows residents to:
- Recycle at no charge. This service is primarily used by multifamily residents to recycle.
- Request a bulky waste pickup at no additional cost twice a year. Bulky waste items include mattresses and other large items.
- Obtain free mulch for landscaping
- Recycle Christmas tree and holiday string light free of charge
- Drop off tires, televisions, mattresses, fryer grease, and many other items for a fee
Why does the Transfer Station need improvements?
The transfer station was built in the late 1980s when Georgetown’s population was almost 10,000 people. At that time, the City anticipated the transfer station would last until the year 2000 and be able to manage the waste of at least 16,000 residents before an upgrade was needed. The transfer station is now managing the waste of nearly 100,000 residents and those numbers are expected to continue to increase.
The transfer station is also in need of improvements to meet the minimum state regulations for health and safety.
By improving the transfer station, the City increases efficiency, as well as increases the services offered to residents, such as household hazardous waste collection and compost. The improvements will also allow the transfer station to generate additional revenue, which is currently about $150,000 a year.
What is it going to cost overall?
The transfer station improvements will cost about $10 million to build. This will be paid over the course of 20 years.
Who is paying for the transfer station improvements?
The cost of the transfer station was divided into 3 parts annually:
- Approximately $321,000 annually from residential customers
- Approximately $220,000 from commercial customers
- Approximately $180,000 from construction or remodeling sanitation fee
Why is the City paying for the upgrade instead of Texas Disposal Systems?
The transfer station is a City asset, and the City is updating its property. TDS operates the transfer station for the City.
What improvements are being made to the transfer station?
- Construction of a transfer station building to cover the area where materials (trash and recycling) are managed to meet state regulations.
- Reworking roads to separate residential and commercial truck traffic
- Upgrades to the residential recycling and drop-off areas
- Removing a stormwater drain
- Installation of a truck/vehicle wash bay for all City vehicles
- Regrade the landscape to:
- Direct water to a stormwater pond
- Prevent standing water on the old landfill
- Prevent overflow to the San Gabriel River
- Meet minimum state regulations for maintenance of an old landfill and stormwater management
Were other options for improvements to the transfer station considered?
City Council considered three options at its May 26 meeting before selecting Option A.
Upgrading the transfer station building, scale house, scales, truck wash, and site work; as well as building a covered drop-off area, realigning the road, and regrading the compost area.
*Estimated cost: $ 9.6 million
Option B includes all of Option A as well as the addition of an operator building.
*Estimated cost: $ 9.86 million
Option C includes all of Option A as well as the addition of an operator building, and outdoor education area.
*Estimated cost: $ 10.3 million
*These are estimated costs. The final cost of the project will be approved by City Council when the construction contract is awarded.