AKLIsa, your transit station sounds so enlightened. You've gotten some amazing goods! I wish there was a system like this in every city and town.
When my grandmother died, my mother could not bear to look at her stuff, so my father took it all to the landfill. I was hugely upset about this and begged him to bring things to goodwill instead, but he just wanted it over and done. I still feel upset about this. So many nice things! It's wrong on so many levels. Some people have nothing and we happily trash it all away.
Our transfer station is a for-profit that jealously holds onto their 'product'. No one is allowed to take anything. And of course they charge you dearly to dump things off. I try to dismantle everything down to its components so i can recycle and compost the parts of it - i refuse to give money to this broken system.
Right now i have this ugly chair that came with the house. It's wood and upholstery (foam and cloth), with a lot of metal inside (it swivels and stuff). It's big. I really need help breaking this things down - i don't have a sledge hammer or a chainsaw. It's been kicking around and around. I finally got help to load it into my utility trailer and plan to drive it to a friend's house so her family can help me break it down.
Anyway, the thing is not reusuable. I had it outside in the weather for the whole time i lived here and all the upholstery is cracked and eaten-looking. It's a Zombie Chair!
Well, that rant is neither here not there, is it?
I've also received many wonderful things from curbside and trash bins. If i look long enough, I can pretty much find anything eventually, including big things like shelving, desks, sofas and outdoor furniture.