NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Manhattan co-op has gone the extra mile to help the environment.

Garreth O’Connor,the superintendent at 215 East 24th St. in Kips Bay, has taken recycling to a whole new level.

“Where I came from in Ireland we never had as much garbage as what I’ve seen when I moved to America,” said O’Connor, who has created a backyard recycling center so attractive and well-designed that residents are drawn to it. “Some people think it’s an office back here.”

“I wanted it to look appealing,” O’Connor said. “So the neater it looks, you make it look like it’s in a store. And if people want it, they come and take it.”

There’s everything from books and bicycles to frying pans and artwork.

“It’s a real event back there,” said resident Kathleen Garrett. “I go often to see what’s being recycled.”

It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”

“People take it, decorate their walls and maybe they don’t love it anymore and they bring it back here,” O’Connor said.

The center has become a swap meet of sorts for residents.

“You’ll see things that were there last week, might not be there, “said resident Marlin Harding, who moved into the building three years ago. “They’re gone, and have been replaced with other new items.”

In the end, there’s less garbage at the curb and ultimately in the landfill.


Leave a Reply