Construction has begun on a "green" industrial park that will be powered by SWACO's Franklin County landfill.
On Thursday, Dec. 12, the Orlando-based Team Gemini LLC, a sustainable project design and development company, broke ground on the Gemini Synergy Center, a 365-acre commercial and industrial complex, and the Center for Resource Recovering and Recycling, a 290,000-square-foot facility designed to take refuse out of the waste stream going into the Franklin County landfill and convert into reusable material.
The industrial park will be leased on SWACO property north of state Route 665 and west of Interstate 71.
The building, referred to as COR3, will be located on 22 acres adjacent to the landfill.
"This project has been a long time coming," said Doug Haughn, president and co-founder of Team Gemini and a Grove City native. "Our goal is lofty, but we know we can achieve it."
The GSC, according to material provided by Team Gemini, will provide its own electricity, generating the equivalent of what would be needed to power 30,000 homes. It will power the industrial park and the COR3 facility, which will serve as the main collection point for municipal solid waste. And it will extract 5,000 tons of recyclables from the weekly waste flow -- roughly a quarter of what goes into the landfill now.
Among the valuable materials that can be extracted from the unsorted trash are metals, plastics that can be converted back to oil and diesel fuel, and organic material that can be used to generate methane gas, power, steam and CO2 for greenhouses.
The long-term plan of the project is to eventually collect all incoming waste and to tap into the landfill itself to reclaim already buried material.
"This will redirect a lot of trash from the landfill," Franklin County Commissioner John O'Grady said. "This will help the community for generations to come."
Grove City Mayor Richard "Ike" Stage said the project will create a next-generation industrial park with a positive environmental impact that will also bring in jobs and sustainability.
"This is a rare opportunity," Stage said. "A lot of goals get accomplished."
The project is expected to create between 300 and 500 jobs.
"When a business locates here, they can truly be 'green,' " Haughn said. "You'll see a lot of buildings out here and a lot of jobs."
Team Gemini has a 99-year lease with SWACO for the property.
Construction of the COR3 building is projected to be finished by 2016 while the rest of the GSC industrial park is expected to be operating by 2017.