Marietta recycling center still open

The Marietta Area Recycling Center is open for business.

That’s the message coordinators want to get out, after a recent fire closed another recycling facility and one of the operators of the Marietta center passed away, prompting some confusion from the public.

After hearing several concerns from area residents, operators of the Marietta Area Recycling Center, 915 Gilman Avenue, assure that the center is indeed open and ready to meet the recycling needs of the community.

“It’s just that since mom (Marilyn Ortt) passed away, there’s been some uncertainty,” said Coordinator Kathy Ortt said. “On top of that the (Level 5 Recycling Solutions) fire just caused some confusion. I just wanted to clear that up and make people aware we’re still accepting things.”

Marilyn Ortt, a local naturalist, passed away May 25 at the age of 78.

The fire at Level 5, near Moore’s Junction, occurred July 13 and resulted in the entire facility being destroyed, including the main offices of Marietta Industrial Enterprises (MIE).

Likewise, volunteer Becky Wright said the center is business as usual.

“Some people have asked if we’re still going to be open, and hopefully the message is out that, yes, we will be open as usual,” she said.

Ortt said new recyclables are now being accepted at the facility, mainly because of a change in where some materials are sent to be processed.

Corvus Ventures, right next door to the center, processes old books, DVDs and CDs that the center might get, in addition to cardboard.

“They recycle things from the Cleveland Public Library,” Ortt said. “They recycle books…It’s worked well, not only with proximity, but infrastructure to absorb our materials, and we get to recycle books now, and CDs and DVDs.”

Wright said the new recycler should work out for the center.

“They have a different way of organizing materials; we just have to get used to it,” she said.

Ortt said with the new additions to what’s considered recyclable, a Treasure Table has started up, and is helping keeps more things out of landfills.

“If we see anything we think could be of value and (has) a reuse purpose…we’ll take some stuff and try to set it on the table and see if people will take it,” she said. “So that’s just another thing we’re trying to get out of a landfill now…Our goal is to keep as much trash out of landfills as possible. Turning trash into something of value, that’s so important.”

Volunteer Dave Buchanan, 77, of Lowell, has volunteered with the center for seven months.

“They needed help and I needed something to do to get out of the house,” he said.

Buchanan said he enjoys working around the center, sorting and making sure things get where they’re supposed to be.

Volunteers are always needed, said Ortt. Right now, the center has 14 volunteers, and each one is set to work on different days and shifts. She said the hope is to find 10 more.

“We encourage volunteers of all ages,” she said. “I don’t think we’d ever turn a volunteer down.”

Ortt has stepped into her mother’s shoes since her death, and said she’s glad to carry on the legacy left behind.

“They’re big shoes to fill,” she said. “This (center) was her baby, one of the first things she started.”