Statewide, the Ohio EPA is issuing more than $5 million in grant funding to 89 recipients to implement recycling, litter prevention, market development, and scrap tire recycling programs. The City of Bowling Green, in partnership with Wood County Plays, applied for, and was selected to receive, $116,638 to help fund the installation of the Inclusive Playground. Grant funds will help offset the cost of installation of the poured rubber surfacing, which is estimated to be $233,277.00 (nearly 50% of the total project budget).
The playground surfacing will be made up of nearly 85-percent shredded recycled tires. To cover the planned 10,760 sq. ft. of play space planned for this project, it will require approximately 75,000 pounds of recycled tire rubber, which is roughly 2,800 recycled tires. The recycled tires will all be sourced from Ohio.
“This is a big win for the Inclusive Playground project and for statewide recycling initiatives,” said Amanda Gamby, the City’s Sustainability and Public Outreach Coordinator. “We’re proud to be able to combine inclusivity and sustainability initiatives into one project, setting a positive local example for all who visit and enjoy this new space.”
Ryan Wichman, Director of Wood County Plays, added, "We couldn’t be happier to be selected for this award by the Ohio EPA. As an organization we explore every funding option to ensure all kids of all abilities have safe play spaces to enjoy. The city of Bowling Green has been a tremendous partner every step of the way. Being awarded this grant is another shining example of that partnership."
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Community and Litter Grants are available to local governments, parks or health departments, state colleges and universities, solid waste authorities, and nonprofit organizations or Keep America Beautiful communities to support and expand community recycling and litter prevention efforts. Market Development Grants assist businesses that purchase equipment and infrastructure for successful markets of recyclable materials and related products. Scrap Tire Grants provide financial assistance to Ohio’s businesses, communities, and nonprofits seeking to convert manufacturing operations into facilities that accept scrap tire material, expand tire processing, or use scrap tire material in construction projects or manufactured products. Academic Institution Grants are available to public and private K-12 schools, colleges, and universities for recycling efforts as well as outreach and education, recycling equipment, and conference sponsorships.
Additional information about the grant programs can be found online at www.recycleohio.gov.