WM worker at material recovery facility
Photo courtesy of WM

WM announces 5 facility investments

The Houston-based company is investing a total of about $166 million in facilities in Florida, Michigan and Washington state.

November 22, 2022

Houston-based WM has announced several investments in recycling facilities across the United States, including facilities in Florida, Michigan and Washington state.

The company is investing $75 million to construct a new WM Recycling South Florida facility in Pembroke Pines. According to WM, the 127,000-square-foot recycling facility will be built on a 12-acre parcel adjacent to WM’s existing Reuter Recycling Facility in Pembroke Pines. The company says the site is already zoned for a recycling processing facility.

“WM Recycling South Florida is planned to be the largest and most technologically advanced recycling facility in the southeastern United States and will demonstrate our commitment to increasing recycling for our municipal and business customers in south Florida,” says WM Florida Area Vice President David Myhan.

WM says the Florida facility will not need to rely as heavily on hard-to-fill manual sorting jobs and instead will focus on hiring individuals to work directly with equipment monitors, computers and optical sorters. The facility also will feature a 1,200-square-foot education room the company calls a WM Sustainability Education Station that can be used by school and civic groups as well as municipal and customer communities.

WM also has invested about $35 million in a new, state-of-the-art material recovery facility (MRF) in Detroit. WM says that facility is expected to break ground at the end of the year, with the goal to finish construction by the end of 2023. This project is part of WM’s expected $275 million investment in recycling infrastructure for the year.

“Our intent with this investment is to position Detroit as a recycling hub for further sustainability progress in the state of Michigan,” says WM Great Lakes Area Vice President Aaron Johnson. “We are committed to the environment, the Detroit community and increasing access to recycling infrastructure.”

WM says it anticipates the proposed Detroit MRF will be able to provide processing services to industrial, commercial and residential customers, both mixed recycling as well as source-segregated cardboard. The company says the MRF will feature paper screens and optical sorters aimed at improving the recovery rate for materials.

In addition, WM has invested $56 million to advance recycling technology at three of its MRFs serving communities in western, eastern and central Washington as well as northern Idaho.

In Woodinville, Washington, WM is rebuilding its Cascade Recycling Center, which processes recyclables from communities and businesses across western Washington. With the upgrades, the facility will feature advanced optical sorters, ballistic separators, volumetric scanners and other new technology. WM says it expects to begin the rebuild this month and finalize it by the summer of 2023.

WM also is upgrading technology at its WM Spokane Materials and Recycling Technology (SMaRT) Center in Spokane, Washington. The company says SMaRT Center upgrades total $15 million and are planned to begin in 2023 with a goal of completion by 2024.

Additionally, WM says its JMK Fibers facility in Tacoma, Washington, processes recyclables collected from King County, Kitsap County, Pierce County and several other areas. WM says it completed a $7 million upgrade at JMK Fibers in September, following an investment in 2019 to install additional paper screens, optical sorters and a second plastic sorter.