Nearly one million tires are illegally dumped annually in Memphis, TN.
Memphis City Beautiful Commission partnered with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to collect illegally dumped tires to be recycled into materials for a walking trail.
In total, Memphis City Beautiful Commission along with its partners and hundreds of volunteers collected over 26,000 tires within 3 square miles of T.O. Fuller State Park, which is an area heavily impacted by tire dumping. Through an initiative called Tires to Trail, the tires are recycled and reused as surfacing for a 2.9 mile walking/bicycle trail in T.O. Fuller State Park, becoming the longest of its kind.
The Tires to Trails Initiative was developed as an innovative way to reuse and recycle while remaining environmentally friendly. Notably, it also has saved tens of thousands of tires from polluting waterways. Through this effort, the trail will bolster tourism, create jobs, encourage exercising and bring much-needed stability to the impoverished communities surrounding T.O, Fuller State Park.
Memphis City Beautiful Commission was awarded a 2020 Keep America Beautiful Innovation Award for this project.