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Project description

Plans to modernize King County's network of recycling and solid waste disposal facilities were outlined in the King County Council approved 2006 Solid Waste Transfer and Waste Management Plan Download PDF 650 K. Efforts to find a site to build a new station to serve south King County began in 2012 and ended in 2017 with the selection of the property at 35101 W Valley Hwy S external link, just north of the existing Algona Transfer Station as the location for the new station.

King County is in the process of designing a new recycling and garbage transfer station to be built in Algona that will replace the 1960s-era Algona Transfer Station. The new station will offer a full array of recycling services, hazardous waste disposal for households and qualifying business, sustainable building features, offsite wetlands improvements, on-site creek enhancements, public art, and other community benefits. King County will keep the existing Algona Transfer Station open throughout construction of the new facility.

Location of new South County Recycling and Transfer Station

The new South County Recycling and Transfer Station will be built at 35101 W Valley Hwy S external link , just north of the existing Algona Transfer Station. (enlarge imageenlarge image)

Overall project schedule
(For more detail, see Project schedule)

flyover video: final design of new South County Recycling and Transfer Station (YouTube)
Watch this flyover video Youtube showing the final design of new South County Recycling and Transfer Station.
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Pursuing Living Building Challenge Energy Petal Certification as part of King County Strategic Climate Action Plan Priority Action.

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Approximate service area of South King County Recycling and Transfer Station
Approximate service area of South County Recycling & Transfer Station

Station design

The Solid Waste Division's project team has worked collaboratively on the preliminary design of the new station, including input from a community-based Design Advisory Group, the cities of Algona, Auburn, Pacific, and Federal Way, employees who will work at the new station, and through input provided by community members through online and in-person community engagement.

30% design was reached in mid-2020. At this stage, major elements of the new facility, the project schedule, and the budget were set. Architectural renderings show where buildings will be located on the site, basic floorplans, elevations, roads and sidewalks, traffic flow, etc. See 30% design renderings:

60% design – began in March 2021. In this stage, the design was further developed. Underground utilities, final traffic flow, parking, lighting layouts, proposed landscaping, and the mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems were designed.

90% design – began in mid-summer 2021. In this stage, all unresolved questions and concerns from the 60% design were addressed.

100% design – final design of the South County Recycling & Transfer Station was completed in June 2022. Watch this flyover video Youtube showing the final design.

Services, features, and benefits of new station


100% of customers would use services offered at new South County Recycling & Transfer Station
  • Recycling: appliances, glass, metals, paper, plastics, wood, yard waste, and more
  • Hazardous waste disposal for products from homes and qualifying small businesses
  • Garbage disposal


Top community concerns about South County Recycling & Transfer Station project
  • Solar energy
  • Charging station for electric vehicles
  • Algona Creek realignment and habitat enhancements
  • Capture and use of rainwater
  • Sustainable materials with recycled content
  • Community compatible design with native, drought tolerant landscaping


Top community benefits of the South County Recycling & Transfer Station
  • Apprenticeship and training opportunities
  • Local job creation and economic investments
  • More efficient customer experience
  • Environmental education
  • Public art
  • West Valley Highway South road improvements

Public involvement

Public involvement is essential in identifying and evaluating the design elements for the new South County Recycling and Transfer Station. Representatives from south county cities, the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, business and residential neighbors, and solid waste hauling companies are advising the Solid Waste Division on the design of the new station. For information on their meetings, please see Design Advisory Group.

South county community members have provided input on the project via an online open house and in-person engagement at community events.

Community members indicated they would use at least one of the services provided at the new station – recycling, garbage, or hazardous waste disposal. The top three concerns expressed about the new station included traffic, odor, and impacts to the stream and wetlands on site. When asked about the benefits of a new station, community members indicated they would like to see job training and apprenticeships offered during construction, walking or biking trails, and an environmental feature at the station.

As the design process continues, we invite you to stay informed and stay involved!

Design Advisory Group

In the Fall of 2018, the Solid Waste Division (SWD) convened a group of community members interested in participating in the design of the new South County Recycling and Transfer Station in Algona. SWD is committed to pro-equity community engagement and reached out to people who represent a variety of community interests to be on the Design Advisory Group (DAG). The DAG has included representatives from the cities of Algona, Auburn and Federal Way, a neighboring business, a representative from a garbage hauling company, a residential neighbor, and a Muckleshoot Tribal member.

The role of the Design Advisory Group is to:

  • Review technical documents and provide guidance
  • Consult on design options to influence decision-making
  • Act as a sounding board for the project technical team
  • Ask questions, listen and learn
  • Help communicate project information to the community
  • Help identify issues from a community perspective and report back to the DAG and SWD

As the project moves forward, we welcome additional community members to join the Design Advisory Group. Please contact the project manager for more information.

Public art

In 1973, King County adopted legislation creating the 1 Percent for Art Program. The program requires that 1 percent of funds from capital construction projects be set aside for public artwork. Experience has shown that investments in public art benefit the community in many ways, from deterring vandalism to turning public facilities into better neighbors and community assets. Public art associated with King County construction projects is managed by 4Culture, the county's cultural services agency. 4Culture ensures that the work of artists is reflected in the built environment, bringing art into the everyday lives of visitors and residents. Visit external link for more information.

4Culture was pleased to announce the artists selected external link for the South County Recycling and Transfer Station Project are the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe's Cultural Division external link and Evan Blackwell, a visual artist and faculty member at Evergreen State College. The Muckleshoot Indian Tribe seeks to "create regenerative spaces for people in natural ecosystems" and is committed to the support, cultivation, preservation, and sharing of cultural traditions. They are interested in accessing ancestral teachings, translated through design, artwork and a holistic approach to the environs of the site, which sits close to the Muckleshoot Reservation and whose wetlands and Algona Creek Tributary feed into the White River watershed—a sacred resource to the Muckleshoot.

Evan Blackwell's external link artwork began with early training in ceramics and has evolved into an "inventive reuse and repurposing of such things as salvaged building supplies, disposable products, and post-consumer waste." He reworks materials to generate transformation by rearranging our idea of the familiar.

Project schedule

  Updated November 2021 (subject to change)

Date Actions/Events/Public Meetings
July 2012 – Sept. 2016 Potential locations for the new facility were identified, criteria to evaluate locations were developed, an Environmental Impact Statement was completed, and multiple community meetings were held. For a summary of activities and meetings on siting of the new facility, please see the Facility siting process page
Feb. 2017 King County selected a site at 35101 West Valley Highway S, Algona, WA as location for new South County Recycling and Transfer Station. See news release.
Nov. 2018 Preliminary station design begins
Nov. 29, 2018 First Design Advisory Group meeting
Dec. 12, 2018 Summary of Project Open House Download PDF 50 K – held at Algona City Hall, 200 Washington Blvd., Algona external link to community members to learn more about the project and provide input on design.
Feb. 8 - June 2, 2019 Online open house – community members were invited to give their input on design of the new station, including ideas on sustainable design features, services to be offered, and impacts and benefits to the community.
Feb. 28, 2019 Second Design Advisory Group meeting
May 30, 2019 Third Design Advisory Group meeting
Fall 2019 – winter 2020 Value Engineering Study, and environmental analysis and studies (noise, geotechnical, traffic, wetlands and stream) performed
Feb. 14, 2020 4Culture's Call for Artists external link to create public art for project
Aug. 2020 4Culture announced Artists selected for the project external link
May 28, 2020 Fourth Design Advisory Group meeting
July 1, 2021 Fifth Design Advisory Group Meeting
Aug. 25, 2021 Online Open House – an opportunity for community members to learn more, ask questions, and give input to project team on 60% design
Summer 2021 - Fall 2022 Station final design
2023 - Spring 2026 Construction of new facility
Summer 2026 New facility opens to the public

Project documents

Final environmental impact statement

Draft environmental impact statement

Project contacts

If you have questions or comments about the project, please contact the project manager or call the Solid Waste Division.

Project manager

Karen Herndon email Karen Herndon – Project manager
King County Solid Waste Division
Telephone: 206-477-0529, TTY Relay: 711

King County Solid Waste Division
Telephone: 206-477-4466, TTY Relay: 711

King County Solid Waste Division mission: Waste Prevention, Resource Recovery, Waste Disposal

Contact Us

 Call: 206-477-4466

TTY Relay: 711