A high-tech recycling centre in Milton Keynes has been recognised in a national awards ceremony - 19 months before it will even open.
Milton Keynes Waste Recovery Park (MKWRP) is expected to open in September, and will use three different state-of-the-art technologies which will together cut the amount of rubbish sent to landfill to around 3 per cent.
And plans for the scheme were commended in the ‘Innovative Planning Practice in Decision Taking’ category of the Royal Town Planning Institute South East Planning Awards 2014.
Councillor Mick Legg, the council’s cabinet member for environment and waste, said: “We are delighted to have received this award, recognising the hard work that ensured the planning approval process for the Milton Keynes Waste Recovery Park ran so smoothly.
“This plant will make a real difference to the way we treat our black sack waste, saving us money in the long term, as well as being good for our environment by drastically cutting the amount of waste we send to landfill.”
The award was collected by Milton Keynes Council and its contractor AmeyCespa.
Prior to submitting the planning application they held a wide-ranging programme of consultation, including public exhibitions, newsletters to residents, attending of parish council meetings, individual meetings with local businesses, and the formation of a Community Liaison Group which is still in place.
The aim of the consultation was to engage with the local community as much as possible, informing them of the plans and encouraging them to feed back their views on our proposals.
Construction work is due to be completed by January 2016, and after commissioning and rigorous testing work it will be fully operational in September 2016.
Tom Coleman, operations director for AmeyCespa East, said: “Being commended in these awards is a real achievement as typically waste facilities can be subject to complicated planning processes and don’t always have the fantastic support which MKWRP has received from the local community.”