The Hillsdale Transfer Station will be closed until early October due to the construction of a new building at the facility, which Modern Waste Systems and the City of Hillsdale operate.
This new building will replace the previous structure which was constructed in the early 1980s, according to Director of the Hillsdale Department of Public Services, Jake Hammel.
“It was just time to replace it. Structurally, it had started to fail,” Hammel said.
Specifically, he said, the building had endured structural damage from years of use. Rust, corrosion, and a bent internal structure had rendered repairs impractical, according to Hammel.
A consultant engineer was concerned the structure would be incapable of enduring a heavy load of snow during the winter, he said.
“It was just painfully obvious it needed to be taken care of, just to make us feel good that it wasn’t going to fall down in the very near future,” said Hammel.
He said the new building, which is taller than the old one, cost the city roughly $300,000.
“We have to have a building suitable for our municipal waste service contractors to work in,” said Sam Fry, Marketing and Communications Coordinator for the Hillsdale Board of Public Utilities.
Hammel said the steel structure is likely to be completed by the end of the week, after which contractors will install the building’s electrical system and doors.
City officials are optimistic that the project will be completed between early and mid-October, according to Fry.
The Department of Public Services hopes to prevent the new building from wearing down as the previous building did, said Hammel.
“We intend to have, at least quarterly, walk-throughs with Modern Waste – as they’ll be the operator out there – just keeping track of damage and making sure we can get there in a timely fashion,” he said.
The walk-throughs are designed to allow quick repairs to any damage, which he hopes will allow the building to last longer.
“The new building has a couple of features that should help it last longer,” said Fry. “The big thing is, it’s going to have a double concrete floor.”
When heavy equipment runs over the floor, the metal can wear down the concrete. Fry said this is the reason for adding a double concrete floor. When wear-and-tear erodes the first layer, he said, the floor can be fixed without removing the entire base of the building.
The transfer station has been closed for construction since July 12, 2021.
While the station is closed, the public will not be able to dispose of their waste at this location. The city government recommends the public either sign up for a trash collection service, or dispose of their waste at another facility.
The city website refers readers to the Modern Waste Systems collection service, which includes weekly trash collection and bi-weekly recycling collection for a price of $14 per month.
For those who prefer not to sign up for a collection service, the city included a list of alternative waste disposal locations on their website. Such facilities include Modern Waste Systems (7245 S. Brooklyn Road, Jackson), Republic Services C&C Landfill (14800 P‑Drive N, Marshall), the Jefferson Township Transfer Station (3255 Pioneer Road, Osseo), and Liberty Landfill (7900 S. Meridian Road, Clark Lake).