Several recycling bins at the Gallatin Recycling Center on Long Hollow Pike will be turned into functional pieces of art later this year thanks to a $4,500 grant from the Bonnaroo Works Fund.
The grant comes from the charitable arm of the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival and will be used to fund cleaning and preparation work for three 22-foot recycling bins prior to the art installations. The entire project is estimated to cost up to $9,000 with the city covering the remaining expenses.
“We really appreciate that Bonnaroo is giving back beyond the borders of Manchester and Coffee County,” Mayor Paige Brown said in a prepared statement. “With this grant, we’re breathing new life into our recycling center and we’re highlighting a program that continues to be an important part of our city services.”
The Gallatin Beautiful Committee is expected to select artists and determine what artwork will be installed within the next two months, according to city officials. During that time, the city also plans to contract workers to sandblast and apply primer paint to the recycling bins.
The project must be completed by November, according to the grant application.
“We believe the (recycling) center’s vital role in our environmentally conscious world demands that we take care in its maintenance and cultivate community pride in its appearance,” Gallatin Public Works Administrative Assistant and Gallatin Beautiful Committee member Dianna Johnson said in a prepared statement about the grant. “What better place to commission local artists to give a much-needed facelift?”
Bonnaroo and the Bonnaroo Works Fund of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee have awarded more than $7 million to more than 100 local organizations within the last decade.
Last year, students from Gallatin High School and Volunteer State Community College completed a similar project by reproducing “Water Lilies” by Monet on one of the city’s recycling bins. The competed work is what led the city’s public works department to apply for the Bonnaroo grant in order to expand the idea to other containers at the recycling center.
Since 2015, the center has prevented more than 1,726 tons of recyclables from entering the waste stream, according to data provided by the city. The facility has recycled more than 54.8 tons of plastic, 327.7 tons of paper/cardboard and 74.3 tons of glass since 2018.