Weather Forecast


Solid waste campus plenty busy without incinerator

A truck sits outside the office at the Red Wing Waste Campus on Monday morning. Services and work at the Bench Street campus continue, even though the incinerator is shut down. (Republican Eagle photo by Danielle Killey)

The city’s incinerator is no longer running, but the Red Wing Waste Campus remains open and busy.

“We have not shut down,” said Jeff Schneider, Red Wing Public Works deputy director of solid waste. “All services will still be provided.” The Red Wing City Council voted last week to keep the city’s incinerator shut down and send processed waste to Xcel Energy’s local facility to be burned.

But the rest of the waste campus on Bench Street will remain open and operational for Red Wing residents and others who use it.

The hours still are the same — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday — and those who use the campus shouldn’t notice a difference in services, Schneider said.

Staff at the campus also will continue to work on improvements and offering new services — for example, events similar to the electronics collection day held in January and improving resource recovery, he added.

Next steps

But while the public won’t notice a difference in what’s offered, it might see changes at the campus as the site shifts its work.

The equipment for the incinerator will have to be removed and the area refurbished to accommodate processing operations and equipment, such as a permanent shredder system, Schneider said.

Staff and the city will be working to find funding for the equipment and work, as well as finalizing other details, such as the agreement with Xcel to bring waste to its site.

It’s a lot of planning and work, but “we’d like to get it done quickly,” Schneider said, adding ideally everything would be set and ready by 2016.

Still, the public shouldn’t be impacted too much.

“We’ll keep running our operations as much as possible” during the work, Schneider said.

Staying prepared

Overall, Schneider said the changes will reduce costs, and there should be enough revenue coming in to set funds aside for maintenance and other capital needs at the site.

“Then there’s not a big shock to the system” at some point, such as suddenly needing to purchase a new piece of expensive equipment without planning for it, he said, and “we can put money back into the system.”

Danielle Killey

Danielle Killey covers local government for the South Washington County Bulletin. She has worked as a reporter for other Forum Communications newspapers since 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a journalism degree.

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