An estimated 15,000 used athletic shoes collected in Tempe will be picked up and recycled into sports and playground surfaces Monday.
The used sneakers have been collected over the last four years by the city in partnership with the Nike Reuse-A-Shoe Program and the National Recycling Coalition, according to the initiative.
The shoes are sent to processing facilities, where they are broken down to create a material called Nike Grind, which is used in the construction of athletic floors, courts and fields, according to the organization.
Tempe has participated in Nike's Reuse-A-Shoe Program since Arizona State University coordinated the first collection on Earth Day 2004. Recently, the city paid to resurface tennis courts at Kiwanis Recreation Center using the material.
Since the start of the Reuse-a-Shoe Program in 1993, Nike has recycled more than 16 million pairs of shoes and donated more than 170 sport surfaces in communities, according to the company.
The material will be taken from the Public Works Field Services yard, 55 S. Priest Drive, at 8 a.m. Monday.
Tempe will continue to collect used shoes at seven permanent drop-off locations:
Arc Thrift Store, 201 W. Southern Ave., Suite 39.
ASU Student Recreation Center, 400 E. Apache Blvd.
Kiwanis Recreation Center, 6111 S. All-America Way.
Tempe Public Library, 3500 S. Rural Road.
Tempe South Police Substation, 8201 S. Hardy Drive.
University Presbyterian Church, 139 E. Alameda Drive.
Westside Multigenerational Center, 715 W. Fifth St.