Oaks Landfill

The Oaks Landfill is approximately 545 acres with a  waste disposal footprint of 170 acres. This County-owned site is located at 6001 Olney-Laytonsville Road, Maryland. The landfill received mixed municipal solid waste (MSW) from June 1982 until the County’s Resource Recovery Facility (RRF) began operation in the Spring of 1995.

Once the RRF operations began, the landfill received only ash residue and non-processible materials until 1997. By the time the landfill closed in 1997, over 7 million tons of waste had been placed within the disposal footprint. The Oaks Landfill has a leachate pretreatment facility and a gas management facility that will continue to be operated throughout the 30-year post-closure maintenance period. A 2.4-megawatt (MW) landfill gas-to-energy facility started operation in mid-2009.

The landfill gas-to-energy facility (LFGE) will produces approximately 1500 kW to 1600kW of electricity per day. The power generated by the LFGE provides electricity to Montgomery County residents through a PEPCO power grid. Based on the 2018 LFGE Emissions Report, the estimated environmental benefit from the Oaks Landfill Gas-to-Energy Facility includes the reduction of approximately 132.10 tons of methane gas emissions and 23,017.10 tons of CO2 emissions.

Leachate is collected from the landfill and stored in lined lagoons. The leachate is then pumped to an on-site pre-treatment plant and treated before being transported by truck for discharge into the permitted sanitary sewerage system. Landfill gas blower/flare systems and leachate management systems are checked daily by the plant contractor. Routine site inspections are performed to check for litter, illegal dumping along the site perimeter, erosion, fence damage, and other general maintenance issues.

Oaks Landfill Mediated Agreement (PDF, 11.5 MB)

Groundwater, Surface Water, and Methane Gas Monitoring Data

Groundwater, Surface Water, and Methane Gas Monitoring Data

Self-Guided Tours by Appointment Only

Contact Dan Rogers at Daniel.Rogers@montgomerycountymd.gov to schedule a self-guided tour and provide the following information in the self-guided tour request:

  • Individual/Organization Name
  • Number of people planning to tour the landfill
  • Proposed time for self-guided tour
  • Touring location and purpose for tour

Please wait for Mr. Dan Rogers to respond before touring the landfill.
Self-guided tours are by appointment only. Unwelcomed guests will be asked to leave and local police will be notified.

Blue Mash Trail

The Blue Mash Nature Trail, near Laytonsville in Montgomery County, lies in the buffer area of the  former Oaks Landfill, which closed in 1997. After the landfill closed, the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection worked with staff from the Maryland-National Capital Parks and Planning Commission, an advisory commission, and members of the local community to plan the trail. The Department of Environmental Protection opened the Nature Trail and an adjoining mixed-use trail (for hikers, bicyclists, and horseback riders) in 2001. The natural-surfaced Nature Trail is approximately 1.6 miles long with a nice mixture of habitats and a corresponding variety of birds.  Because of the  diverse habitat, including two ponds, fields, thickets, and both young and mature woods, many different families of birds can be seen including songbirds, flycatchers, waterfowl, shorebirds, herons, and raptors. The Nature Trail is a level, circuit-route trail which conveniently begins and ends at the parking lot off Zion Road. Lastly, the Blue Mash Nature Trail is maintained by the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection.

Parking and Trail Access: Parking for hikers is located at the Zion Road entrance. Parking for equestrians, cyclists and hikers is located at the Route 108 entrance.

To report a maintenance issue on the trail such as a fallen tree blocking the trail, please call 240-777-6574 or email all maintenance service requests to: Jamie.Foster@MontgomeryCountyMD.gov.

To report any suspicious or illegal activity, please contact Montgomery County Police or 311.