The City of Red Deer's waste management facility
takes a new approach that will lead the way for others. It is an
integrated facility that includes not only a landfill, but also
a composting pad, recycling/salvage area, permanent household hazardous
waste depot, and an interpretive centre. This project was completed
in 2001 after a 10-year period that involved technical engineering
studies, complex approvals, engineering design, construction and
quality assurance and control throughout.
The process started with extensive
public consultation, which is reflected in everything from the excellence
of the design to the architecture and overall feeling and functionality
of the site. The location of the 640-acre site is within city limits,
which minimizes the transportation distance and associated environmental
One of the highlights of the
facility is the landfill design, which includes a composite liner
(combination of clay and synthetic liner) and a granular leachate
collection system to collect liquid seeping through the garbage.
The liquid, or leachate, is either disposed of at a wastewater treatment
plant or is re-circulated in the landfill. The re-circulation of
leachate will allow the cell to act as a bio-reactor - the increase
in moisture causes acceleration in the decomposition of the waste.
This has the added benefit of increasing the rate of production
of landfill gases, thus improving the economic potential for recovery
of the greenhouse gas methane.
The all-weather compost pad is constructed with
a gravel base and a surface made from RAP (Recycled Asphalt Pavement)
cold mix. The recycling/salvage area is designed to handle large appliances
and scrap metal. The hazardous waste facility allows citizens of Red
Deer to drop off household hazardous waste on a permanent, year-round
Education is an important
component of any waste management program. The Waste Interpretive
Centre is designed to complement the Grade 4 science curriculum,
specifically the unit on "Waste and our World". Hundreds
of students tour the facility each year as well as many individuals
and adult groups. The displays are designed to be fun, entertaining,
and informative. Visitors get an understanding of the need for responsible
waste management and the sanitary landfill process. They are also
encouraged to take personal action to reduce, reuse, and recycle
Prior to construction, the existing wetland
area on the site was identified as a sensitive area for preservation.
An Ecological Profile process was used to inventory plant and animal
species. The wetland is viewed as a focal point that enhances the
facility and provides an example of a development and a natural area
This project brings together
environmental protection, leading edge design, and a commitment
to education to benefit all stakeholders. Red Deer is proud to have
this facility "in its backyard"!
2001 Edmonton Co-Composting