Broad Ripple Square recycles ten tons of glass per month.
Wanting to work toward full stream recycling on the Indianapolis city block known as Broad Ripple Square, an idea was conceived to implement a three phase plan that will lead us to eventual zero land fill. The beer bottle is arguably the most ubiquitous object in Broad Ripple. In order to utilize the co-mingle programs that became available in 2008, the problem of eliminating the bottle effectively had to be dealt with first. Recycling the bottle turned out to be the trickiest bit to accomplish. Through the organization of a number of restaurants, a plan was worked out to sort and recycle the bottle. We expect to expand the effort until full stream recycling of all waste in Broad Ripple Village becomes routine.
The month of September, 2008 brought the first phase of full stream recycling to Broad Ripple Square. Through the efforts of the Green Broad Ripple Restaurant Group, a Green Broad Ripple, Inc. committee focused on improving the way our independent restaurants effect the environment, much thought has gone into the educational process of glass recycling. Lucky to find a local glass processor who will provide the bins, Ambrosia Ristorante, Conner’s Pub, Petite Chou and Union Jack Pub lead the charge to take bottles and jars out of the waste stream. We now have ten restaurants, various retail shops and business offices diverting glass to Strategic Materials. Each business was given an appropriate number of Waste Watcher bins for their business. These bins were awarded to Green Broad Ripple, Inc. by the Coca Cola Company/National Recycling Coalition Recycling Bin Grant Program.
Typically, “recycled” glass collected in Indianapolis is sent to landfills to be reused as road bed material, rather than having to introduce aggregate for temporary roads within landfills. An honorable end for bottles you recycle…true enough. However, the glass bottles and jars collected in the bins in Broad Ripple Square are reduced to cullet by our glass processor, and then sold to bottle manufacturers to be recycled.
Once the details were worked out, residents of our Village were invited to drop off their jars and bottles as well. The simple rules are these: absolutely no pottery, ceramics, or dishes/cups of any kind; no mirrors, window nor picture framing materials, no plastic trash bags…only bottles and jars are welcome. Should anything other than bottles and jars be thrown into the bins, the lot will be contaminated and useless. We made it clear, this service is free to our neighborhood businesses as long as we can guarantee a contamination free load.
Jacobina Trump, Stutz artist, muralist, and a strong advocate for environmental change, has offered to artistically enhance the first glass recycling bin that will be placed in the parking lot behind the ten participating restaurants. Spring of 2009, watch the canopied bin be transformed into a functional piece of art. Jacobina has suggested a trompe l’oeil scene, the finished work to augment the area, another positive element for our Broad Ripple streetscape.
Phase II – recycle co-mingled plastic, metal and corrugated cardboard
Phase III – compost restaurant waste