New Recycling Center Opens Next to Pat’s Liquor in Ocean Beach

by on October 9, 2019 · 25 comments

in Ocean Beach

Here’s some good news. Ocean Beach has a brand new recycling center.

Prince’s Recycling Center just opened earlier this week next to well-known Pat’s Liquor at 5096 Voltaire at the intersection with Abbott Street. James Prince and Allison and Laura are making the bold venture.

Their center will be open Mondays through Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and closed on Sundays. 

I spoke to Basil, the owner of Pat’s Liquor, who told me he was approached by Prince with the idea. Prince has experience in this business, as he was behind the recycling center up at Stump’s market until recently. Basil said he was open but wanted to wait and see if Prince was serious enough to obtain the city and state licenses – which Prince did.

Basil said he’s not worried that recyclers will get in the way of his customers because James has strict rules: no shopping carts and no loitering.

There’s plenty of room for vehicles to drive up and unload.

This is a much needed addition to OB and Point Loma. Ever since Prince was forced to close his operation at Stump’s, the area hasn’t had a recycling center close by. Plus what with the current California recycling crisis, the neighborhood needs this outlet.

Laura and James.

Thank you James, Allison, Laura and Basil.

{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Avatar Val October 9, 2019 at 3:50 pm

Yay!! This is great news. I was wondering what was going on. Great luck!! Love the tribute too.


Avatar Sam October 9, 2019 at 4:27 pm

Ugh!! More junkies traipsing through the neighborhood. Wouldn’t this be a better addition to the Sports Arena neighborhood?


Avatar Deez Nuts October 12, 2019 at 5:38 pm

It won’t be any different than it already is.


Avatar Divinity November 10, 2019 at 1:01 pm

Awesome! Thanks Prince Recycling!


Avatar Divinity November 10, 2019 at 1:06 pm

Why is it recycling, saving the planet, etc…. Is all good & dandy – as long as you aren’t homeless when you do it?
Why would people “get in your way” that are trying to help? Seems a bit arrogant & ignorant to me.


Avatar Pat Magroyne January 18, 2020 at 5:06 pm

Obviously you don’t live in the middle of the war zone like we do. believe me it brings in every drug addict and dangerous homeless person for miles


Avatar Alex S February 12, 2020 at 4:39 pm

“War zone?” What a disgusting comment to make about your own neighborhood. I think I’d feel more uncomfortable around someone like you than a homeless drug addict.


Avatar Geoff Page February 12, 2020 at 4:50 pm

Don’t know how long you have been around, Alex, but the nickname “War Zone” has been applied to northwest OB for many. many years. Probably not so applicable these days but maybe.


Avatar Denine October 9, 2019 at 8:16 pm

This is excellent news!


Avatar Nanci Kelly October 9, 2019 at 8:32 pm

Thanks so much to the people at Pat’s Liquor and Prince for making this happen. Our local recycling system needs the facility, and I was impressed by the way Prince’s Recycling Center at Stump’s was run. Instead of responding to Sam’s comment, I’ll just thank the many hard-working recyclers that I meet in my alley, and throughout the community, who are contributing to Jim Bell’s vision and the possibility of a sustainable future for my granddaughters, Emma and Olivia. Great news!


Avatar Sam October 10, 2019 at 10:14 am

There is a problem with the alley folk recycling by digging through everybody’s garbage. In order for the city to continue its blue bin recycling program, they need to collect as much of the easily recyclable items as possible, which gives them a justifiable revenue stream. When you take away the bottles and cans from that program it becomes increasingly expensive to operate and the city will be left with 2 options. Either raise taxes for sanitation or stop the recycling program. I would rather not be left with either of those two choices. Not to mention, I don’t like junkies digging through my trash.


Avatar ZZ October 10, 2019 at 1:36 pm

If the city would make the time of its truck schedule more regular, we could time putting out our blue bins to discourage this. But in the past three cycles, they came at about 7:45 one morning and 11:30am the next cycle. I don’t mind grabbing cans off the top of the bin, however a regular occurrence is:

Looking for unlocked gates or cans against the side of a house
Make tons of noise
Taking cardboard items off the top, dropping it on the ground
Ripping through bags in the black bin and making
Leaving the lid open for trash to blow out

In fact, one or more of these things happens pretty much every week.


Avatar retired botanist October 10, 2019 at 2:38 pm

Both Sam and ZZ have some good points. I lived on Voltaire street for 4 years, and my 2nd floor apt was about 6 feet from the neighboring building. I was plagued by the disturbance and noise from a neighbor who, at least 3 times a day, would come out to the back of her unit and crush cans she had collected from our (and other) recycle bins right under my window. She collected pounds and pounds of them, it was obviously an obsession, not to mention a source of income for her and her family. Sometimes she would crush cans for an hour at 11pm. Not to mention a source of flies, rodents, and possum. I tried filing a noise complaint, I tried filing a nuisance complaint as she would come over and rake through our recycle bins for the cans, at all hours. They also had a rooster- for a very short time-THAT noise complaint worked. But honestly, between that and the airplane noise, it was dealbreaker.
I don’t know what the answer to all this is, but I applaud these folks for their efforts at keeping recycling facilities going. I can also say SD has a much better recycling effort than other areas of the country- hard to believe so many other areas of the U.S. are incredibly behind in this critical problem.


Avatar Val October 11, 2019 at 12:34 pm

Sam – I totally agree. I can’t stand to be woken up as the bums rummage through the bins. Actually I was stoked when all the nearby recycling centers closed, I can always drive mine to a facility. However, I found that nothing changed. I still had people digging through the bins. So that is why I am onboard with the new recycle center close by. I will no longer have to drive to recycle. As long as the owners don’t allow loitering and shopping carts we should be OK.


Avatar Devon November 4, 2019 at 7:44 pm

Then don’t put nickels in ur black or blue bins. I place mine next to the bins. They get swooped up fast and silently. I rinse and pre crush. No mess. No noise. No wasted effort. Nobody wants to dig through your shit. If you look at ur problems without disgust of yourself or others – the solution is obvious. When I look in the blue bins of my apartment complex things are so soiled I doubt they can even be recycled. The sound of a crushing can echoing off alley walls stimulates an awareness of hard work opportunity and self sustainability in my mind. This same noise upsets you. Your frustrations have a source coming from inside you, not outside your window.


Avatar Divinity November 10, 2019 at 1:08 pm

Great advice!


Avatar Tyler October 10, 2019 at 11:28 am

It’s illegal to dig through other people’s bins for recyclables, and I wish it was enforced. The “world class canning” traffic definitely decreased a lot in my alley after the last center shut. Suddenly the cleanliness of the alley went up by an order of magnitude.


Avatar paul October 10, 2019 at 6:28 pm

These centers should refuse to take recyclables unless you can prove you are a resident with an electric bill or ID/driver’s license. No more professional blue bin thieves from other places or homeless scavengers (except for residents who do it).


Frank Gormlie Frank Gormlie October 10, 2019 at 9:58 pm

Paul – pretty sure that would be unconstitutional.


Avatar paul October 11, 2019 at 1:36 pm

yeah probably lol


Peter Peter from South O October 11, 2019 at 2:47 am

Providing ID when redeeming at a California recycling center is required when the total is >$100. Much respect for Mr. Prince; the regulations that his biz has to operate under are not onerous, but precise and strictly enforced.
As far as the Constitution is concerned, what I believe to be unconstitutional is charging a recycling deposit to the individual and not offering the refund with equal ease. Grocery stores used to have reverse-vending machines out in front. You put in an empty can or bottle, out came spare change or a cash coupon to redeem in the store.
Then came the professional canners and everything went downhill.
Here at Casa Pedro we took one of our recycling containers, cut a hole in the top and locked the sucker with a padlock that Waste Management (the contractor up here in Oceanside) provided. Cans and bottles in the top, pros have not raided it once since.
This gets the value back into the local recycling operation (and it isn’t as noisy at 3AM).


Avatar Paul Holmes October 11, 2019 at 4:41 am

I live behind Stumps and ever since they got rid of the recycling center that used to be in the Stumps parking lot, the tourist problem has literally gone away in this area. Now that this new recycling center has opened I can garuntee you that it will only bring extra ripe tourtists to your area. Good Luck because your gonna need it!


Avatar Sad day October 19, 2019 at 10:16 am

what a god awful idea! I live on this block and the amount of homeless has already increased…I was curious why and just noticed the new recycling center today. Can’t imagine I’ll be renewing my lease now, I don’t want to live next to this. I literally left downtown to get away from a recycling center that attracted allllllll the crack and meth heads.

Get ready to see people shooting up on the sidewalk, sleeping on your porch, and all the other delights of homeless drug addicts that I experienced near a similar business just a few miles inland.


sealintheSelkirks sealintheSelkirks January 19, 2020 at 4:56 pm

Something to think on:

Here is a challenge for you; I want you to think about something in a different way. The next time you see a homeless person begging for change on the side of the road with a cardboard sign. I want you to ask yourself, could I do that? Could I stand on the side of the road in all weather and beg for money from strangers? It’s simple enough, all you need is a marker and a piece of cardboard. But if you’re homeless…you probably don’t have a magic marker, and you probably don’t have cardboard either. I’ll give you a tip, look at their shoes.

I can tell you these things because I was once homeless myself. I’d worked for twenty-five years without missing a paycheck then I went into business for myself. For three years I was successful, I was about to hire some part time help when the stock market crashed. My business dried up like turd in the sun and I began looking for work. Looking for anything that would help me get by. To make a long story short I ended up sleeping in a garage. I sold my truck; I couldn’t pay the insurance anyway and contemplated suicide. I’d been successful my entire adult life and now I was destitute.

Obviously, I didn’t go through with it not because I came to my senses but because I was a coward. I was afraid to fail. I was also too scared to stand on the side of the highway and beg. Don’t kid yourself…it takes guts. There are motorists who look away and worse still are those who don’t. They look straight at you with disgust like you are an alien or a monster. It reminds me of a story a friend once told me. He’d been hired by a sanitation department to ride on the back of a garbage truck. On his first day, a friend from high school pulled up behind the garbage truck in a new BMW and there you are holding on to the back of a garbage truck.

Homelessness will teach you a lot about the world and a lot about yourself. I filed for food stamps, and the office told me I should receive my card in three to five days. I had three dollars in my pocket, so I could have three, dollar cheeseburgers at Burger King or six Snickers bars at the drug store. I would walk to the library each day to use the computers. The library was filled with homeless, homeless salesmen, homeless contractors’ men and women whose marriage couldn’t stand the strain when the economy crashed. The old adage is true, when money goes out the door love flies out the window.

In Portland, they called it canning, the collection of cans and bottles for the five-cent deposit. Twenty to the buck and all you have to do is rummage through dumpsters, but it beats standing on a highway. I was hired as peon labor to paint a house in exchange for room and board. She stiffed me on Christmas Eve. This is a point that is driven home to you like a spike to the head, if you are homeless you are considered worthless. Why should you miss a Christmas party because you owe homeless guy thirty bucks?

It was one of the greatest educational experiences available to mortal man. To see the world without you in it. To see the world turned inside out and upside down and to feel yourself at one with the bottom side of humanity. Kelly Thomas was beaten to death on the streets of Fullerton, California. His crime? Hanging out by the bus station and why was he hanging out by the bus station? Because he was homeless and it was the only public restroom for miles. This is the real world! You have no place to wash yourself or to wash your clothes. I once found a tube of toothpaste on the street and stashed it in my bag; you can’t buy toothpaste with food stamps.

Forty percent of all homeless Americans have a job. Over one million children are homeless on any given night and we do so little. When forest fires ravaged California the President blamed the state. When an earthquake devastated Puerto Rico, the President blamed corruption. But in this case, I don’t blame the President, he’s just doing what everyone does blaming the individual for the crisis. Saddam, they said, had weapons of mass destruction. We spent trillions of dollars killed hundreds of thousands of people on a threat. General Motors teetered towards bankruptcy and the government moves in with baskets filled with billions in loans and goodies.

Twelve million homes were lost in the foreclosure crisis with four to a home that’s almost fifty million Americans out in the street and what was done for them…nothing! Because of minuscule wage growth and soaring rents Americans find themselves priced out of their own economy. The is what wage inequality is all about, living in an economy where millions can’t afford the basic essentials of life. The disgraced head of Boeing, Dennis Muilenberg recently stepped down. His severance package was $62 million dollars but the company was quick to add Muilenberg must forfeit $14 million in stocks and will receive no further severance.

Sixty million dollars and you’re done, so far Boeing has suffered eight billion dollars in losses and killed three hundred people and this clown walks out with a King’s ransom. Meanwhile, millions of American men women and children suffer, absorbing the blows and earning the scars that will never leave them. Their lives are negated, their dreams destroyed. I cried because I had no healthcare until I met a man without a home.

“You can only understand people if you feel them in yourself.”
? John Steinbeck


Avatar Mary Richardson June 4, 2020 at 11:12 pm

I Love this place. I hated having to go to go El Cajon. Way to go Pat andJames. As for the people talking about the homeless and druggies. Not all homeless are drug users. What about the drunks from the many many many bars in Ocean Beach


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