Recycling & reducing waste

Images showing recycled and reclaimed material used in Phoenix parks

Though energy and water efficiency is becoming integral to the way we build and operate, we're actually building sustainability from the ground up. When we build or renovate parks or recreation facilities, we're reusing materials and using paints and sealers with fewer harmful fumes called volatile organic compounds. We're also building facilities that we can clean and maintain with fewer harsh cleaners. We used multiple sustainable design and building practices on the recent renovation and construction projects listed below:


Maryvale Pool House Renovation (2009) 

  • Recycled materials used for benching and decking
  • Low-VOC coatings and paints meaning fewer harmful fumes during construction

Civic Space Park (opened fall 2009)

  • Benches and decking made from recycled materials
  • Low VOC coatings and paints, meaning fewer harmful fumes during construction

North Mountain Visitor Center

  • The floors are almost all sealed concrete floors. With no carpeting or tile, we can avoid cleansers and shampoos.

Rio Salado

  • Salvaged debris and recycled materials used throughout.
  • Solar irrigation controllers eliminate the need to run costly electrical wire over long distances. The reduced use of copper wiring also makes the site less susceptible to wire theft and vandalism.

Department-wide Practices
Here's what we've done at our existing parks and facilities throughout the city:

  • Added recycling bins at hiking preserve trail heads, diverting thousands of plastic bottles from the waste stream each month.
  • Partnered with APS to replant 405 mature trees in city parks that were salvaged from an APS Power Line Project. This saved the city of Phoenix approximately $712,000 and kept thousands of pounds of green waste out of city landfills.
  • Replaced cleansers with less-toxic alternatives. In addition to reducing our use of chemical cleansers and lowering VOCs, replacing the cleansers saves us $11,000 annually.
  • Installed synthetic grass athletic fields at two tournament complexes. Synthetic grass fields offer a tournament championship-caliber playing surface without the need for water, fertilizer or mowing. This reduces operation expenses, decreases our use of resources and allows our tournament facilities to compete for amateur sports events that generate millions in economic impact.