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  • By Lisa Cassidy, ecoImagine

Cardboard balers cut costs & free up space in NYC high-rise residential apartment buildings

Running a recycling program in a large residential building can be a labor-intensive, time-consuming process. Take cardboard recycling: Unlike single-family homes with curbside pickup, a large apartment building can accumulate hundreds of boxes each week, which can quickly overwhelm maintenance and storage areas.One building, The Orion, a luxury condominium on West 42nd Street in New York City, found a convenient, space-saving solution - compacting and baling cardboard boxes and plastic packaging using a multi-chamber cardboard baler.What To Do About All This Trash The Orion has 60 floors of apartments, which adds up to approximately 550 residents PLUS retail space. Every time a resident makes a purchase or has something delivered, he or she is adding to the ever-growing cardboard pile. The building’s superintendent was faced with an age-old problem: Finding space to store the building’s trash and recycling material, while also reducing trash removal costs. According to the building’s superintendent, “We found that we were using valuable real estate on our lower floors to simply store boxes. That space is worth far more rented out to a commercial entity.”Avoiding Fines and Fees Garbage day in New York City is not easily missed. Given that 42nd Street is a major tourist thoroughfare in the heart of Manhattan’s theater district, The Orion wanted to minimize the amount of trash its building was putting out at the curb.They realized the large piles of cardboard were not only creating an eyesore on the street, they were taking up too much space on the sidewalk and were costing too much to remove.

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