In a very short time apartment residents at The Helena will be able to compost without leaving their homes. The new program being implemented at The Helena, at 601 West 57th Street, means that residents will be keeping their organic trash out of the landfills. The plan, as being thought out by The Durst Organization, is also supposed to be used in a brand new apartment complex currently being built next to The Helena. The program however is still in the planning stages and is set to launch at The Helena as a test. New York City is increasingly becoming a green city with sustainable buildings and programs such as these.
Residents of the new 32-story, 750 unit building will be able to throw their compostables like vegetable peelings, coffee grounds, and apple cores into a biodegradable bag and then toss this into a special communal bin in the building’s garbage room. The compost will then be turned into fertilizer instead of being heaped onto a landfill. Right now many residents in New York City must drag their compost to collection centers, like the ones found at farmers markets, or pay someone to pick it up. The Durst model seeks to streamline this process with the hopes that more residents will try composting.
The program promises to be one of the largest organized residential composting programs in the city, given that there are 1,350 apartments between the two buildings. “We’re very close to implementing a compost on the Helena,” said Amanda Kaminsky, Durst’s Sustainable Construction manager. “We’re just trying to learn a lot because it’s just not done at this sort of scale now.” The Department of Sanitation, which is already in the area collecting compost in a pilot program on the Upper West Side, will collect the waste three times a week.
In addition to the compost, the new building will also have textile and battery disposals in the garbage rooms, allowing residents to dispose of waste in the most eco-friendly way possible. Composting, and green buildings, are on the rise in New York City. Apartment residents seem to prefer to put aside their biological waste so that it can decompose naturally, thereby helping local soil and gardens. The composting program is just one of many green initiatives the developer plans to include with the new building. Other initiatives include sourcing local eco-conscious materials, Forest Stewardship Council-certified wood, and providing residents with charging stations for electric cars.