As we grow more aware of sustainability and the impact or our waste on the environment so does the need for facilities that support a proactive way to manage that waste. In an effort to build on this momentum and increase community outreach, the Alabama Environment Council along with the City of Bessemer have partnered to develop a new recycling center in the heart of Bessemer. This new facility will expand the reach of the AEC and elevate the discussion and importance of recycling in our communities. As a office, we have been involved with the AEC for nearly six years.
The building is composed of a single structural steel bay that is either added to or subtracted from the footprint based on programmatic need. By using a modular unit we are able to plan for future expansion to grow with the demands of the community. The walls of the new recycling center will be made of a simple concrete block that is both cost-effective and durable. The overhead shade structure will be a combination of a galvanized metal roof at the material bays and translucent poly carbonate panels at the open bays. The shape of the roof allows for the harvesting of rainwater for cleaning the equipment and facility. Low-maintenance landscaping compacted gravel drive will allow for any additional rainwater to be managed on site. The result is a durable, cost-effective facility that is pragmatic while still being sympathetic to the surrounding context.