We are working with the local NARI chapter, the Naional Kitchen and Bath Association and local builders/remodelers to minimize deconstruction waste in Atlanta, Georgia.
We have developed a repurpose store called Reclaim It Atlanta that accepts reuse materials and comes up with creative ways to repurpose them. For example, using old toilets as planters, used cabinets to restore investment properties, and old doors for welcome signs in community corridors.
Mark Galey, President of The Fuller Center for Housing of Greater Atlanta and formerly on the board of NARI Atlanta and the Georgia Real Estate Investors Association saw that many families in upper incomes were remodeling their houses and that there were many usable items coming out of the homes. He began to talk about how The Fuller Center could use these items in their work for low income families. The group began investigating reuse operations on the west coast and realized that here in the south we were sending large amounts of waste to landfills and that we didn't have to. So Mark and The Fuller Center Board decided to take action. We found some space in a warehouse and started accumulating old paint, kitchen and bathroom cabinets, lighting, excess tile and wood flooring. All things that would go to landfills. We then began to find places to use the goods. Recently, we remodeled a Fire Station in Atlanta. We used kitchen cabinets that came out of a home in Alpharetta, Georgia; we used old granite countertops and cut them into pavers from Bethlehem, Georgia; we used metal shelving that came from an architectural firm and made lockers for the hose room to hang fire suits for airing; and we made planters out of old cedar moulding to beautify the exterior of the building. The list goes on. We have provided materials to canning operations that are providing those re-entering from prison, jobs. We have provided veterans homes with kitchen cabinets, bathroom counters and building materials for expansion and we have retrofitted homes for low income families and those who are disabled. In total we have kept tons of waste from going to local landfills.