Ontario Tire Stewardship survey reveals local parks, walkways and community centres across the province need a little TLC
TORONTO, Oct. 17, 2012 /CNW/ - Public facilities and community spaces in Ontario continue to stand the test of time as important places to gather and play, but may not be standing up to the standards of its residents. According to a recent Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS) survey, more than a third of respondents (37 per cent) feel that public spaces such as playgrounds, parks and recreational facilities in their communities are outdated.
In fact, 40 per cent of respondents in the survey feel that the use of non-durable construction materials may have caused many of these local spaces to become prematurely outdated, while 71 per cent of Ontarians say a better selection of materials could help reduce the overall cost of maintaining public facilities. In addition, 40 per cent of respondents are concerned about the safety of their outdated community spaces.
"It's important to remember that our homes are not the only places we spend our quality time," said Andrew Horsman, Executive Director, Ontario Tire Stewardship. "Our community gathering spaces are places we go with family and friends as a part of what we call 'home'. These public places can significantly contribute to our quality of life when these areas adhere to the best of environmental, safety, aesthetic and functional standards."
While 62 per cent of Ontarians do not feel that public facilities, parks, playgrounds and pedestrian walkways are currently environmentally sustainable, they are keen to support local revitalization projects that would inject new life into tired spaces using eco-friendly materials made from recycled tire rubber. Specifically, respondents stated they would like to see more sustainable products used in high traffic areas such as pedestrian walkways, roads and running trails (38 per cent), and community gathering areas such as parks playgrounds and courtyards (30 per cent).
"As parents and community members frequenting many of these public spaces, we're always looking out for safety and updated facilities where we feel comfortable," said Kelly Meissner, Founder of Kate's Kause Playground in Elmira, Ontario. "Communities in Ontario need more facilities that are accessible, safe and environmentally sustainable so that families can enjoy them for years to come. Partnering with OTS helped Kate's Kause deliver an eco-friendly solution to address that need by allowing us to incorporate durable, low-maintenance products made from recycled tire rubber in the recent construction of our Kate's Kause playground."
OTS works with recycled product manufacturers, processors, collectors and haulers across the province to responsibly manage scrap tire waste and bring innovative green products made of recycled tire rubber to market. To help create greener communities using these tire-derived products, OTS recently announced a call for applications for the 2012 Community Grant Program - one of many market-focused incentive programs to support sustainable innovation and design within the province.
Through the program, organizations, schools, not-for-profit community groups and municipalities can receive up to $50,000 in funding to revitalize or develop eco-friendly community spaces using sustainable Ontario-manufactured recycled tire products. Since launching the program in 2011, OTS has worked with organizations and municipalities to sustainably revitalize playgrounds, pedestrian walkways, parking lots and public educational facilities across Ontario using tire-derived products, giving old tires a new lease on life. Notable green projects in the province have included a community gathering space at the Evergreen Brick Works in Toronto, Kate's Kause Playground in Elmira, and Pathways Health Centre for Children in Sarnia.
"Sustainable products such as rubber mulch, playground surfacing or gym flooring made from environmentally safe recycled tire materials address more than just the environmental benefits. Important factors such as cost savings, safety and durability are also valuable long-term benefits for consumers and communities considering greener alternatives in their homes and local facilities," said Horsman.
To date, Ontario's tire recycling industry has helped divert more than 40 million scrap tires in Ontario from landfills and stockpiles.
For more information on eco-friendly tire derived home, garden and building products, and Ontario's recycled product manufacturers download our e-consumer guide at http://www.greenmytires.ca/guide.
About the Survey:
This report presents the findings of a telephone survey conducted among a provincial random sample of 1000 adults comprising 500 males and 500 females 18 years of age and older, living in Ontario. The margin of error for a sample of this size is +/- 3.10%, 19 times out of 20.
Interviewing for this Research House National Telephone Omnibus Survey was completed during the period: September 10 - 15, 17 - 23 & 24 - 30, 2012 & Oct 2 - 7, 2012. Data collection was conducted from central Research House dialing facilities in Toronto, Ontario
About Ontario Tire Stewardship:
Established in 2009, Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS) is an Industry Funding Organization (IFO) incorporated under Ontario's Waste Diversion Act, to implement and operate the Used Tires Program.
The program recycles and reuses the 12 million tires sold annually in the province, preventing them from ending up in landfills or being dumped illegally. Instead, OTS directs these scrap tires to recyclers who use them to make new green products for a variety of applications including home, garden, school, arena, park and more. Beyond recycling, OTS also educates and encourages Ontarians on the use of tire derived products - items made from used tires that actually last longer and work better than similar products in market, and educates Ontario drivers on how to get the most life and performance from their tires.
SOURCE: Ontario Tire Stewardship
For further information:
To arrange an interview with an Ontario Tire Stewardship representative please contact: