Reuse & ReCenter Swap Shop
The ReCenter Swap Shop (pdf), located at the Glendale Road Transfer Station, allows individuals and organizations to donate durable, useful homegoods and furnishings for reuse. Donated items are available to ReCenter members free of charge. Membership is automatic for city transfer station permit holders. For those who do not want access to other transfer station services, or those who live outside of Northampton, an annual ReCenter member permit is available for $10. Both permits are available online, at city transfer stations, and from the Public Works Department at 125 Locust Street (map).
The ReCenter is open Saturday mornings from 8–11:30 AM April 13 through October 26. Our zero-waste and zero-cost pledge requires that we accept material selectively. Our goal is to avoid trash generation and its financial drain on city resources. When high demand items are quickly adopted, or unadopted items are recyclable (e.g. bicycles and books), ReCenter exchanges are cost and waste-free. If an item is not recyclable or is not in demand, we can accept the item only if the donor pre-pays the normal disposal fee. This allows us to accept more risky items without the City of Northampton being saddled with landfill tonnage costs. Here is a list of the items (PDF) that the center can and can not accept.
A small army of volunteers passionate about reuse and waste reduction staff the ReCenter. It is managed by the City's ReUse Committee and the Department of Public Works's (DPW) waste reduction coordinator. New volunteers are always welcome. Contact Susan at 413-587-1059 to learn more about volunteer opportunities.
Important Information for Trained ReCenter Volunteers
Please add yourself to (or remove yourself) the volunteer schedule via this link. If you have difficulty of any kind, please contact Susan. Please note that you do not need to "join" SignUp Genius in order to use this on-line sign up form, but they will ask you to join anyway. The benefit of joining is that the website will automatically enter your contact information when you sign up for a shift, saving you typing effort. The downside is that you will need to create a password, and will receive periodic solicitations from Sign Up Genius.
Other Reuse and Repair Opportunities in Northampton
There are a number of local and state directories to help you find ways to make sure durable household items are reused or recycled. Who Takes What is a directory with options within the greater Northampton area, and the locally produced 2018-2019 Reduce Reuse Recycle guide offers a detailed "What do I do with" listing (see page 13). The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection offers Donation & Reuse options and a Beyond the Bin Recycling Directory (both of which tend to be Eastern Mass oriented).
Greater Northampton is home to many organizations promoting reuse and repair. We have businesses specializing in repair, vintage, consignment and charity clothing, furniture and decorative item stores, used book, CD and DVD stores, antique stores, and stores selling furniture and décor fashioned out of repurposed items. Search the Yellow Pages under repair, used clothing, used furniture, used records and antique stores to learn more.