By Vlad Yurlov
Would you like to have a nice picnic near a garbage dump? How about a meeting? If Metro has its way, these are just some of the frills that will come attached to its newest waste facility. A new transfer station is being planned in Cornelius to expand waste management services to the west side of the region. But instead of providing a functional facility that benefits the region, Metro is pitching expensive features that have nothing to do with waste management, such as meeting spaces, parks, and education centers.
If Metro continues down this path, the new transfer station will have flair instead of function. Waste management debt will be used to fund unrelated goals, while regional improvements still beg for attention. Metro’s systems planning manager says both of the current transfer stations in Portland and Oregon City are “at capacity” and “increasingly costly to operate.” Metro should focus on improving waste management, not adding expensive extras. If the region really needs a new transfer station, there is no room for frills.
Vlad Yurlov is a Policy Analyst at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market public policy research organization.