[getsmart-l] Vaughan's McCleary Court Community Recycling Centre and household hazardous waste plus many more recyclable items

John O'Gorman jcogorman at sympatico.ca
Sun Aug 22 11:26:27 EDT 2010

There are hazards to recycling and being green
MARNEY BECK Aug 19, 2010
[for Markham residents, see - (one and the same place!)
http://www.markham.ca/Markham/Departments/WstMgt/ElecRecycle/Overview.htm - Electronics including TVs
http://www.markham.ca/Markham/Departments/WstMgt/HshldHzrd/ Household Hazardous Waste - even open Sundays ]
Hands up out there, who has a garage full of hazardous chemicals? Or worse, a bathroom cupboard or basement hiding caustic, dangerous products? 

Up until very recently, I was a guilty homeowner. 

Not only did my kitchen and bathroom harbour spent batteries, old floor polishes and mostly-empty paint cans, but my garage was absolutely embarrassing. 

I doubt any neighbours knew that on the metal shelving unit behind our two cars lurked paint thinners, old solvents, half-empty bottles of engine oil, rust removers and empty cans of wasp spray. 

But the two old toilet bowls we had stored in there since replacing them with our modern low-flush versions were clearly visible! 

Time for the summer garage clean-out and a trip to the closest regional hazardous waste facility. 

I used a recent day off to go through the shelves in the garage and bathroom cupboards. 

Once I got all the material together and my husband helped me lift the old toilet bowls into the back of our vehicle, it was time to research where we were going. 

We'd both driven past the Household Hazardous Waste Depot in Vaughan on Rutherford Road, so we knew that's where most of our collection was destined to be safely disposed. 

But a quick check of the Region of York's website showed that the old toilet bowls were certainly not going to be accepted as "hazardous waste". 

Under www.york.ca/services and the "garbage and recycling" link, I found information on Vaughan's McCleary Court Community Recycling Centre  http://www.york.ca/Services/Garbage+and+Recycling/McCleary+Court+CEC.htm . Just a short drive away, it seemed perfect. 

Note: McCleary Court also accepts a WIDE range of materials that you cannot recycle any place else close by - see the website for full details. Also, there MAY be a cost. This Centre is also open on Sundays! 

Armed with my Google map (first mistake) and instructions from the website - "McCleary Court, within the industrial area of Hwy. 7 and Creditstone Road" - I took the wheel (second mistake) and we started our Conscientious Environmental Resident Adventure. 

It was reassuring and at the same time sad at the first stop to see old televisions in one large container, old computer terminals (ours was the only Mac), and a long table loaded with electronic relics from the past (to which we added old telephones and batteries). Staff waved us through and told us what to put where and helpfully helped us unload our paint cans and other small waste items. 

Then it was time to head south down Creditstone to the Community Recycling Centre. 

Did I mention that it was the Friday of a holiday weekend? Did I mention that my husband is one of those guys who is happier being the driver and is not always a happy passenger? 

Traffic in both Richmond Hill and Vaughan is always thick, but on this very hot day it was chocked beyond belief. 

I assumed there was access to McCleary Court via Hwy. 7 and neither my Google map or the regional website had set me straight. 

But as we crawled inch by inch along Hwy. 7, it became clear to my husband and I that there was no access to the recycling centre which could be clearly seen on the north side of the clogged highway. 

Muttering something under his breath (my husband) and mouthing cheerful "oh well, we'll just turn around" inanities (me), we finally found our way to McCleary Court. 

There again, staff were welcoming and gave us instructions and helpfully handed me a brochure with a map that very clearly showed the centre was not accessible off Hwy. 7 (too late!). We deposited our toilets in the appropriate bin and headed back into traffic for home. 

At least the garage looked much cleaner and "greener" when we returned from our Conscientious Environmental Resident Adventure.
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