The Twin Oaks Landfill in Grimes County, Texas, has a rather unique feature: for the past nine months, 16 acres of the property have been used as a training facility for local police departments, including gun ranges for cops from the cities of Bryan and College Station.
The Eagle has more:
About 15 officers may shoot at a given range at the same time. A range is comprised of three tall berms -- raised barriers -- situated in a long grassy rectangle. At one end of each range are 15 targets, all electronically controlled by an officer in a tower at the other end of the range. Targets may be turned and shifted back and forth by computer and by remote control to simulate human motion.
"You don't want to shoot flat targets at a flat range," said Bryan PD Sgt. Ryan Bona. "We wanted to make [the targets] move as realistically as possible. ... You're not just learning about how to shoot, but when to shoot."
The landfill is owned and operated by the Brazos Valley Solid Waste Management Agency, which has been run by a board of Bryan and College Station city leaders since its inception in 2010. The nonprofit operates via revenue made from its solid waste disposal and composting services, with Bryan and College Station as its biggest customers. Leaders at the agency have sought for several years to use a portion of their income to benefit the twin cities. For the past three years, the agency has been saving profits made via landfill use, and ultimately collected $650,000 to construct the facilities.