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6400 Arapahoe

6400 Arapahoe

Visit our engagement platform, Be Heard Boulder, to tell us your ideas for the site!

6400 Arapahoe is part of "Recycle Row," where a number of facilities provide infrastructure to advance the city's waste reduction goals. 6400 Arapahoe is home to: 

ReSource, a used building material donation and sales yard run by ReSource Central;
Eco-Cycle offices, including space for its administration, waste reduction outreach and education, zero waste services and commercial hauling sales; and
• City of Boulder/Eco-cycle Center for Hard to Recycle Materials (CHaRM).

Zero waste encompasses reuse, repair, redesign, recycling and composting. A zero waste system is cyclical, like nature, where everything produced eventually goes back to feed the larger system at the end of its useful life. In practical terms, zero waste is defined as the diversion of 85 percent to 90 percent of materials away from the landfill and to facilities that recycle those materials. The City of Boulder is striving to invest in opportunities for promoting and sustaining a circular economy. Read more about circular economies.


In 2008, the city purchased 6400 Arapahoe. The original purpose of the land purchase was to create a permanent home for two zero waste nonprofit organizations and the facilities they operate that fulfill critical roles in the infrastructure needed for Boulder to become a zero waste community.

The property is subdivided into two lots. “Lot 1” is the portion of the site currently developed and leased to Eco-Cycle and the Resource Central for the used building materials resale yard. “Lot 2” is currently undeveloped.

In May 2016, city council voted to retain ownership of Lot 2 and use it to develop new, innovative zero waste facilities. Since that time, staff has hosted exploratory meetings with tenants and potential tenants of the site and has developed a project plan for site analyses, project visioning and programming for the site, all of which would precede any new land use processes. In November 2017, voters approved continuation of the Community, Culture and Safety Tax, which includes $1.4 million to be used toward development at 6400 Arapahoe.

 Some ideas for programming on these 2 acres include:

  • Reuse-focused Innovation Hub which can potentially include mid-scale flexible manufacturing space, business management and B-Corp training for artisans and entrepreneurs, workshop space, labs (3-D printing, wood working etc.).
  • Retail area for “upcycled” products
  • Gallery space for art made from recycled materials
  • Kiln to dry and portable mill to cut Pine Beetle- and Emerald Ash Borer-infested wood
  • After school and summer camps for bricolage art
  • Pelletizer to recycled plastic to make feedstock for new products
  • Retail space for low-cost, refurbished computers from CHaRM 
  • Classroom space
  • Community gathering space

Please visit our new engagement platform, Be Heard Boulder to tell us your ideas!

What can be made here?
Who could use this?
What could it be used for?
Who should be involved?
How should it be funded?
What industry types could benefit?

6400 Site History and Timeline

In 2009, the City of Boulder purchased property at 6400 Arapahoe Rd. for future waste reduction facilities and raised the city's trash tax to fund it. In 2013, the city completed minor modifications to the buildings and site.  ReSource, a used building materials facility, Eco-Cycle offices and the Center for Hard-to-Recycle Materials (CHaRM) are now located at the site. These nonprofit facilities are located on the western portion of the property and a public process during the next year will help determine the community's desired use for the eastern portion of the property.



Nov. 2001

Eco-Cycle and City open the first-in-the-nation Center for Hard-to-Recycle Materials for recycling used electronics

Aug. 2009

Purchase of property by City of Boulder. Purchase price = $5.45 million

Funded through $6,000,000 Nonprofit GO 20-year bonds; $800,000 Trash Tax investment; $500,000 loan from Boulder County (retired in 2014)

Sep. 2009

ReSource moves to site (allowable under Boulder County zoning)

1 st quarter 2011

Initiate annexation, concept plan, site review and use reviews; Initiate update to Master Plan for Waste Reduction and planning process for eastern portion of 6400 Arapahoe Ave., including public outreach and input

Sep. 2009 – Dec. 2013

Building and site repairs; Major re-model of office/showroom building and site improvements


Planning Board and Council approval of Site Review; Phase I development underway; Phase II development approval for 5 years beyond completion of Phase I (Dec. 1, 2018)

Dec. 2013

Phase I site development substantially complete; Eco-Cycle and CHaRM move to site

2016 – 2017

Update site programming for Phase II, incorporate ideas for eastern lot/Phase III development

May 2016

City Council meeting - present updated site programming, initial concepts for eastern lot. Council approves retaining ownership of eastern lot.

Nov. 2017

Voter approval of Community, Culture and Safety Tax – includes $1.4 million for this project (subject to funding match)

Jan. 2018

Six-month extension approved for Phase II site review approval – to June 1, 2019

Jan. – May 2018

Identify and scope options for funding match and eastern lot/Phase III

May – Oct. 2018

Evaluate ideas for funding and eastern lot/Phase III

Oct. 16, 2018

City Council meeting – extend nonprofits’ leases; provide narrowed options; launch appropriate land use processes

Nov. 2018 – 1 st quarter 2019

Site programming; land use processes; secure funding