Glass recycling at the CHaRM location on Hill Street in southeast Atlanta. (File)

Live Thrive will open a second Center for Hard to Recycle Materials (CHaRM) location in Decatur in early 2023.

To be known as the Zero Waste Center, the facility will be located at 1225 Columbia Drive. A groundbreaking will take place on Nov. 14.

Live Thrive’s DeKalb Zero Waste Center will offer the same vital recycling services as the first CHaRM, located on Hill Street in southeast Atlanta.

 In 2021 alone, the Hill Street CHaRM reused, recycled or reengineered more than 31 tons of Styrofoam, 274 tons of chemicals, 251 tons of glass, 1,727 mattresses and much more for a total of 4.3 million pounds of materials. With the opening of a second location, Live Thrive’s impact will greatly increase.

“Live Thrive is thrilled to increase our overall reach by providing another CHaRM location in the metro area, making it more convenient for DeKalb and Decatur residents to properly dispose of their hard-to-recycle materials,” said Peggy Whitlow Ratcliffe, executive director, Live Thrive. “We have been working hand in hand with the DeKalb County commissioners and the DeKalb County Recreation, Parks and Cultural Affairs department. Commissioner Larry Johnson purchased the 8-acre tract of land and led the charge to have funds appropriated for the new location site preparation.” 

The new recycling facility will be a part of the 8-acre tract of land dedicated to the DeKalb Zero Waste Center. Like the first CHaRM location, the new center will accept hard-to-recycle materials and compost, as well as typical curbside recycling items, including everything from glass to Styrofoam to paint, mattresses, tires and household chemicals.

“I am excited about the community benefits that will be experienced as a result of locating the CHaRM site in Belvedere Park,” said Commissioner Johnson. “Our goal is for the site to ultimately become the South DeKalb Healthy Living Center.  It will be used as an opportunity to promote healthier eating and additional programs for overall wellness while reducing litter and water pollution in the community.”

In addition to operating the CHaRM recycling facility, Live Thrive will provide environmental education at the State Farm Outdoor Learning Center.  Future phases will include a community garden and fruit forest, as well as a bee yard, pollinator garden and more. 

Live Thrive will partner with local schools (public and private), community groups and other organizations to expand educational efforts around recycling and the environment. In implementing the multifarious efforts, the DeKalb Zero Waste Center will provide new jobs to residents. 

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