Two groups that specialize in recycling are joining forces for several workshops next month titled “Rethinking Demolition.” Joe Bolick is with the Iowa Waste Reduction Center at the University of Northern Iowa. He says too much material that winds up in a landfill from building demolition projects could easily be salvaged and reused.
“A lot of times it’s superior building products that were used in older buildings that are being demolished and taken down,” Bolick says. “Some of the products such as the bricks and old growth wood could be reused at a significant cost savings for new construction projects.” Instead of simply taking a wrecking ball to an old building, Bolick says crews should consider the practice of deconstruction. “Rather than just pure demolition, where you’re just tearing apart a building…it’s then extremely difficult to sift through the rubbish left behind and figure out if there’s anything usable,” Bolick says. “If you were to go through a deconstruction process, then you’re pulling out individual components from the building and making sure they’re in a useful format.”
The Iowa Waste Reduction Center and the Center for Sustainable Communities (COSC) will host four “Rethinking Demolition” workshops next month in Ida Grove, Corning, Keosauqua, and Elkader. “We chose those locations because part of the grant that is funding this project is to help reduce the amount of waste going into rural landfills,” Bolick said.
Registration for the one-day workshops is $25 for COSC members and $35 for non-members. Lunch is included. Each workshop is scheduled to run from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The dates and locations of the workshops:
Tuesday March 11th, Ida Grove at the Ida Grove Community Recreation Center
Thursday March 13th, Corning at the Corning Public Library
Tuesday March 18th, Keosauqua at Village Cup and Cakes
Thursday March 20th, Elkader at Central State Bank