Oregon Sign Recycling Pilot Project Proves 41 Percent Savings in First Phase


Governor Kitzhaber positively praised the initial success of the Oregon Sign Reuse pilot program after a recent visit to Northwest Sign Recycling. Since the project kicked off in February, the first phase of 500 hydrostripped and refaced aluminum street signs has provided an overall savings within the state sign budget.

“This pilot project is an excellent example of how Oregon’s Regional Solutions Teams are supporting local priorities and economic development opportunities for businesses large and small,” said Governor Kitzhaber. “Working with companies like Northwest Signs, which is filling important business and transportation needs using recycled materials, is encouraging, because their innovative success has a positive ripple effect throughout Central Oregon and beyond.”

The Prineville-based sign recycling and refacing company, NWSR, was awarded the $150,000 two-year pilot contract by the Oregon State Department of Transportation (“ODOT”) to execute the project. The company transforms outdated, weathered aluminum highway and street signs into clean reusable blanks, without damaging the environment, greatly reducing Oregon’s sign costs and creating more jobs in the region.

“The ODOT Sign Shop in Salem has received over 500 resurfaced sign blanks from NWSR in virtually new form,” said Lori Webb, ODOT Sign Shop. “We are off to a great start with the pilot project. A true win-win for the environment and Oregon sign budget.”

The project kicked off in February with the distribution of sign bins at State Highway Department Yards in five locations throughout the State of Oregon, including: Bend, La Grande, Troutdale, Roseburg and Salem. NWSR is leading the process of collecting and recycling the signs using a hydrostripping technology, where reflective sign sheeting is removed from old aluminum signs using only water.

The process is run by a Programmable Logic Controller calibrated to match the specifications of each sign to direct a power head across the aluminum sign face, forcing a pressurized stream of water that hits the surface at 36,000 pounds per square inch – stripping the sign down to a reusable sign blank. The surface of the aluminum sign is left smooth and clean, ready for refacing with a new reflective sign sheeting. This process is clear of chemicals or erosive solutions, making it the greenest sign refacing process on the market.

“We were pleased to host Governor Kitzhaber at our facility and share with him the process we use to recycle aluminum signs. The savings reported by ODOT are right where we estimated they would be and a true financial improvement to any budget. The contract with the State of Oregon has set a new standard for other states and municipalities to save money, energy and improve sustainability,” added Windie Every.

About Northwest Sign Recycling

Northwest Sign Recycling transforms outdated, weathered aluminum signs into clean, reusable blanks, greatly reducing costs without damaging the environment. Since opening its doors in 2004 in Prineville, the company has worked with hundreds of organizations and municipalities regionally, throughout the Western U.S. and nationally. Advantages of sign recycling:

•    Saves municipalities and agencies money

•    Allows for reuse of existing signs

•    Reduces the need for selling scrap aluminum, sanding blanks and/or buying new signs at increasing aluminum prices

•    Environmentally friendly option for recycling signs, complies with community recycling mandates

•    Earns credit for scrap aluminum signs that are damaged, bent or unusable

•    Provides opportunities for recycling credits to go back to individual department budgets rather than a general fund, to maintain departmental funding allocations for municipal and government clients

•    Signs are picked up and delivered

www.nwsignrecycling.com or 541-279-0386.


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Founded in 1994 by the late Pamela Hulse Andrews, Cascade Business News (CBN) became Central Oregon’s premier business publication. CascadeBusNews.com • CBN@CascadeBusNews.com

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