Specifically, Oestreich and his business partner Gary Linton need all the used glass bottles, old windows, cracked windshields and other glass products people want to recycle.Usually items such as empty beer bottles, wine bottles, cracked canning jars and the like are destined for the garbage.But Oestreich and Linton have a plan to give new life to used glass.
The duo has invested in equipment that will pulverize glass into a fine sand-like material that will be mixed with other materials to make cement, which will be sold at Linton's landscape supply business, Big Sky Rock Works, near the airport.
"Our goal is to start taking the majority of Missoula's useless glass - all colors and all kinds - and turn it into do-it yourself concrete for small home-improvement projects, and sell the product wholesale to contractors that do paving or work with cement," Linton said.
"We would like to get over 1,000 tons," Oestreich said, "and we challenge Missoula to see how much glass we can keep out of the dump."
Anyone interested in recycling their used glass is encouraged to drop off the items between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. at 7140 Highway 10 W., Monday through Friday. In the next several weeks the businessmen hope to have collection bins at various points across the valley.
All kinds of glass will be taken, Linton said.
"We can make the concrete to any spec with this glass - from clear white to a nice fine wheat color, to a sand color with large chunks of glass," he said. "We can grind the glass down, or we can leave some of it in."
Anyone interested in what the end product looks like can view a driveway made with the chunky version of recycled glass at 325 E. Central Ave., where Oestreich lives and where the concrete concept was born.
"It's beautiful, and when the sun shines it just glimmers," Oestreich said. "People like it so much, I already have a guy who wants to build a dance floor and a driveway out of this stuff."
"I think it will find all kinds of uses, and I see it being used for more than driveways - for things like beautiful stepping stones and concrete posts."