Growing Opportunity

 

Reuse culture is underpinned by the idea that there is value in what exists. A worn out tire can be transformed into long-lasting shingles or a forgiving playground surface that helps to reduce injury. Similarly, used oil, unused paint and past their prime electronics can be kept out of landfill and repurposed into something far more useful.

 

Today, there are many examples of next iteration products that are helping to reduce our collective environmental footprint. It’s fantastic progress and ARMA is honoured to have an active role in exploring new opportunities for waste, implementing sustainable solutions and enhancing the value chain.

 

We are also extremely proud of the bright minds within our organization and their ability to continually spot potential. To that end, ARMA’s Collection Site Awards are a shining example of how a great idea can provide the feedstock for something even greater.

Cast yourself back to 1994. Pulp Fiction was a box office smash, Friends hit the small screen, Amazon was in its infancy stage, and in the town of Stony Plain a fellow by the name of Brad Schultz was the Director of Public Works.

 

Brad is now Chief Operating Officer for ARMA, but one day back in 1994, he picked up a copy of Turf Magazine and saw a small ad on the corner of a page, talking about something called ‘Communities in Bloom’.

 

A U.S. initiative at the time, Brad was intrigued by the notion of a friendly competition between communities to see who could design the best front yards, and so he responded to the ad seeking out any Canadian towns that would like to participate. Brad can therefore be unofficially credited with bringing Communities in Bloom into Canada. He spread the word and five other municipalities ended up competing for the prize.

He rallied the residents of Stony Plain to get behind this initiative. It was the sense of civic pride this competition instilled that helped lead them to victory.

 

From there the event ‘blossomed’. In fact, each year more and more municipalities and provinces entered the competition and eventually, a corporate office for the event was established in Ottawa.

 

The competition delivered results. Not only did it bring people together, it created a unique bond in communities where serious energy was being invested into ensuring individual properties, store fronts, and businesses were beautifully and artistically showcased.

 

Fast forward to 2008, and Brad, in his role at ARMA, had another light bulb moment. This time however, instead of flowers, it would involve scrap tires, old computers products and cans of leftover paint.

Growing Opportunity

 

Reuse culture is underpinned by the idea that there is value in what exists. A worn out tire can be transformed into long-lasting shingles or a forgiving playground surface that helps to reduce injury. Similarly, used oil, unused paint and past their prime electronics can be kept out of landfill and repurposed into something far more useful.

 

Today, there are many examples of next iteration products that are helping to reduce our collective environmental footprint. It’s fantastic progress and ARMA is honoured to have an active role in exploring new opportunities for waste, implementing sustainable solutions and enhancing the value chain.

 

We are also extremely proud of the bright minds within our organization and their ability to continually spot potential. To that end, ARMA’s Collection Site Awards are a shining example of how a great idea can provide the feedstock for something even greater.

 

Cast yourself back to 1994. Pulp Fiction was a box office smash, Friends hit the small screen, Amazon was in its infancy stage, and in the town of Stony Plain a fellow by the name of Brad Schultz was the Director of Public Works.

Brad is now Chief Operating Officer for ARMA, but one day back in 1994, he picked up a copy of Turf Magazine and saw a small ad on the corner of a page, talking about something called ‘Communities in Bloom’.

 

A U.S. initiative at the time, Brad was intrigued by the notion of a friendly competition between communities to see who could design the best front yards, and so he responded to the ad seeking out any Canadian towns that would like to participate. Brad can therefore be unofficially credited with bringing Communities in Bloom into Canada. He spread the word and five other municipalities ended up competing for the prize.

 

He rallied the residents of Stony Plain to get behind this initiative. It was the sense of civic pride this competition instilled that helped lead them to victory.

 

From there the event ‘blossomed’. In fact, each year more and more municipalities and provinces entered the competition and eventually, a corporate office for the event was established in Ottawa.

The competition delivered results. Not only did it bring people together, it created a unique bond in communities where serious energy was being invested into ensuring individual properties, store fronts, and businesses were beautifully and artistically showcased.

 

Fast forward to 2008, and Brad, in his role at ARMA, had another light bulb moment. This time however, instead of flowers, it would involve scrap tires, old computers products and cans of leftover paint.

He determined that the “pride, sense of community and feeling of accomplishment” instilled by Communities in Bloom, could be translated to ARMA’s Collection Site Program. And that a healthy competition for municipalities and Indigenous communities across the province could help collection sites and recycling programs flourish.

ARMA’s Collection Site Awards of Excellence was officially launched in 2008.

 

The annual event recognizes three registered collection sites – in the categories of small, medium, and large, based on the populations they serve – for their exceptional dedication to providing collection sites that are organized, convenient and safe for residents and businesses to use.

 

The awards are presented each fall and result in ARMA staff being asked throughout the year, “how can our site win an award?” or “since winning our award, we have maintained the same standard that helped us win in the first place, is there another award we could get for keeping it up?”

 

As predicted, the pride instilled by a well-landscaped front yard is equally evident in the pride generated by a well-run collection site. But equally exciting is the increasing traction for a circular economy that grew from a garden bed idea so many years ago.

ARMA’s Collection Site Awards of Excellence
was officially launched in 2008.

 

The annual event recognizes three registered collection sites – in the categories of small, medium, and large, based on the populations they serve – for their exceptional dedication to providing collection sites that are organized, convenient and safe for residents and businesses to use.

 

The awards are presented each fall and have resulted in ARMA staff being asked throughout the year, “how can our site win an award?” or “since winning our award, we have maintained the same standard that helped us win in the first place, is there another award we could get for keeping it up?”

 

As predicted, the pride instilled by a well-landscaped front yard is equally evident in the pride generated by a well-run collection site. But equally exciting is the increasing traction for a circular economy that grew from a garden bed idea so many years ago.

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