Recycling center in North Park sparks petition drive: Situation dubbed 'recycling nightmare'

SAN DIEG - Some North Park residents say they are plagued by trash and trespassers and a recycling center is to blame. 10News has learned an online campaign has been set up to get rid of it.

We've all seen it: recycling bins turned into gold mines for people, many of them homeless and willing to rummage through them.

In North Park, some say that hunt for recyclables is turning messy.

"It's getting really bad," said resident Dolores Kosmicki.

She lives near a recycling center that is located in the back of the Albertsons in the 2200 block of University Avenue.

Photos shot by neighbors of trash routinely piling up there have been posted online.

Neighbors say the center, which has been in North Park for almost five years, has attracted homeless who dive in bins and party during the night.

"They're so loud … I've had to call police," said Kosmicki.

Some neighbors say they have been shouted down when they object to the trash rummaging. Others say their bins have been tipped over, spilling trash and blocking driveways.

"Some just knock it over, get what they want and leave," said resident Ryan Barr. "This is a cool area with neat historic homes and to see that… it's a little discouraging."

Barr is one of more than 90 neighbors that have signed an online petition asking Albertsons to remove the recycling center.

A Facebook page titled "North Park Recycling Nightmare" has also been set up.

The operators of the center say they tried to be good neighbors by recently adding a security guard and closing on collection day and Sundays.

But some say the problems continue to pile up with the trash.

State law mandates the need for a recycling center within a certain distance of grocery stores.

An Albertsons spokesperson told 10News they have heard the concerns and have applied to the state for permission to remove the recycling center. A decision could come by March.


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