America Recycles Day: Paper Lake Makes Big Statement About Recycling


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Hundreds of office workers at 575 Fifth Avenue were greeted with an unusual sight in the lobby of their building on November 15 – a paper “lake” constructed with over 164 bags of recyclables generated from the building.  Great Forest worked with Cushman & Wakefield to make the eye-catching statement for America Recycles Day. 

“These bags represent one day’s worth of recycling. By bringing it together, you can really see the impact the recycling program is making here,” says Amy Marpman, Great Forest’s director of recycling and maintenance services.

Great Forest sustainability consultants were stationed in the lobby from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. to talk to curious office workers and answer questions about the display and recycling. They also organized a contest to guess the weight of the bags.  Out of 125 entries, three came the closest to the actual weight of 1230 pounds.

“The cumulative effect of waste and recycling is often unseen. Materials get collected at night after most workers have left for the day,” says Amy.

“This display got a lot of people thinking and talking about recycling and wanting to do more.  This will help push the recycling rate at this building to beyond the healthy 80% it is at now.”

Great Forest and Cushman & Wakefield also organized collection points in the lobby for CDs, DVDs, clothing, cell phones and batteries.  Over 100 pounds of materials were donated for recycling by building employees over the course of the week.

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