TDEC Awards Montgomery Bell State Park Grant of $53,750 From Tire Environmental Act Program

Friday, July 22, 2022 | 11:44am

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) today announced a grant of $53,750 for Montgomery Bell State Park from the state’s Tire Environmental Act Program.

The park will provide matching funds of $200,000 from a Recreation Trails Program grant to create a hard surface trail using flexible porous pavement. The trail will be near many of the park’s recreational facilities and will connect the campground with the playground and ballfield. The trail’s main purpose is to provide a safe exercise space. The project will use enough crumb rubber to recycle several thousand tires in the process.

The plans at Montgomery Bell follow a Tires to Trails project at T.O. Fuller State Park in Memphis and continue a partnership between Tennessee State Parks and TDEC’s Office of Sustainable Practices to beneficially reuse tires while enhancing recreational opportunities in the parks. 

“This is an excellent opportunity to support this park for its environmentally responsible actions,” said TDEC Commissioner David Salyers. “These grants serve as a catalyst for such activity, and we are glad that we could assist in this way.” 

"This innovative program to use recycled tires for a hard surface trail not only is a great way to reduce waste, but it will also provide a functional trail that many people from across the state and country will use when they come to visit Montgomery Bell State Park with their families, said Sen. Kerry Roberts, R-Springfield. “It will certainly enhance the park facilities. Congratulations to Montgomery Bell for completing a successful grant application and thank you to TDEC for administering a great program."

“Montgomery Bell State Park is a truly remarkable asset that we are blessed to have in Dickson County,” said Rep. Mary Littleton, R-Dickson. “This project will not only benefit visitors of the park, but it will also help protect the environment by utilizing thousands of recycled tires in the process. I am thankful to TDEC for this meaningful investment in our community.”

The purpose of the Tire Environmental Act Program is to select and fund projects that best result in beneficial uses for waste tires. Projects must qualify for one of three categories: tire processing/recycling, tire-derived material use, or research and development. The program provides grant funding to the eligible entities, including: local governments, non-profit organizations, higher education institutions, K-12 schools, and for-profit entities.

Tennessee established the Tire Environmental Fund in 2015. Upon the first retail sale of a new motor vehicle to be titled and registered in Tennessee, a flat fee based on the number of a vehicle’s wheels is assessed. The fee goes into the fund, which is used for projects creating or supporting beneficial end uses for waste tires.

Since 2015, grantees have been awarded almost $4.5 million, and approximately 3.6 million tires or nearly 42,476 tons of scrap tires have been diverted from landfills. The tires are repurposed for use in rubberized asphalt, tire-derived aggregate, tire-derived fuel, granulated rubber porous flexible pavement, and other beneficial end uses that result in tires being diverted from landfill for a higher and better use.