A pickup truck filled with old tires was one of the first loads to roll into north Houston's new depository and recycling center. Driver Daniel Figaro says if he didn't have a place to bring it, he'd have to pile his debris on the curb, and wait.
"Probably for heavy trash. They've got heavy trash coming once a month. Probably wait for them."
But city officials say not all neighbors are as conscientious. Solid Waste Director Harry Hayes says illegal dumping has been a persistent problem in north Houston, and residents are ready to clean things up.
Mayor Annise Parker cutting the ribbon on North Houston's new recycling center
"I can't tell you how many people that came in, waiting and wanting to dump immediately. Because they can now make appropriate life decisions, about having a facility that's close to their home, that they can get to and use and help keep their neighborhoods clean."
The new facility features a large parking area along with ramps for dropping off heavy trash, items such as tires, furniture, large appliances, and yard waste. Residents can also drop off their household recycling. The drop-off site shares facilities with the ReUse warehouse, which accepts donations of building materials for non-profit organizations. General Services Department Director Bob Christie says the north Houston facility, along with a similar site on the Southwest Freeway, represent a two million dollar investment.
"They were designed to be built aesthetically pleasing, for usability, friendly users. This facility, I'm told, is designed to handle up to ten cars and trailers at a time."
And Mayor Annise Parker says it's about putting Houston on the road to sustainability, as well as well as creating a better quality of life.
"There is no longer an excuse for illegal dumping. There is a safe, convenient, easily accessible site for depositing heavy trash. And if convenience doesn't do it, believe me, will will come back with heavy enforcement."
The facility is as 9003 North Main Street, and if you want to drop off your heavy trash, you'll have to show ID and proof of residency. Residents can use the service up to four times a month. You can also drop off cans, glass, plastic, and paper, along with used motor oil.
Gail Delaughter, KUHF News.