Thursday, January 24, 2019

Thousands of Old Tires to be Made into State Park Trail

Posted By on Thu, Jan 24, 2019 at 10:28 AM

click to enlarge Volunteers stacking collected tires at T.O. Fuller Park - FACEBOOK- MICHAEL MEISTER
  • Facebook- Michael Meister
  • Volunteers stacking collected tires at T.O. Fuller Park

More than 10,000 waste tires were collected by volunteers and officials in T.O Fuller State Park Monday and those tires will soon be shredded and used for park trails.

Nearly 500 volunteers, joined by officials from the city, county, and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), as well as leaders from various partner organizations, including Clean Memphis, and Friends of T.O. Fuller State Park gathered at the park on Monday for the cleanup.

Led by Tennessee State Parks Conservancy, the Martin Luther King Jr. Day event aimed to collect waste tires that will be recycled to form a new, nearly three-mile pedestrian and bike trail at the park.

“Our overall goal is to convert a chronic waste issue of discarded tires into a valuable outdoor recreational resource for everyone to enjoy,” Brock Hill, TDEC Deputy Commissioner, said.

Monday’s effort, a part of Tennessee State Park’s Tires to Trails Program, was the first in a series of three similar events planned for the park.

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland, as well as Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris were two of the officials present Monday.

“There is no better way to honor Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy than with a day of service,” said Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris. “It was great to see hundreds of people volunteering together to not only clean up the community, but to kick off the Tires to Trails Program to improve T.O. Fuller State Park.”

The project is funded by a $200,000 liter pickup grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation and two additional grants from TDEC to be used for construction.

click to enlarge 10,000 tires were collected on Monday - FACEBOOK- MICHAEL MEISTER
  • Facebook- Michael Meister
  • 10,000 tires were collected on Monday

The ultimate goal is to collect close to 36,000 tires from predetermined locations in the Memphis area that will then be recycled into a pavement-like surface for the trail. The recycling process will be done by Patriot Recycling in Bristol, Tennessee.

State Rep. Barbara Cooper, who was there Monday, lauded the project.

“Environmental cleanups are important and I applaud the state for the financial support to involve businesses and the surrounding area towards protecting and maintaining one of Shelby County’s crown jewels,” said State Rep. Barbara Cooper.

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