Materials From Condemned Homes Can Be Bought For Recycling

Jan 16, 2019, 5:46 PM | Updated: 9:11 pm

MIDVALE, Utah – When the Utah Department of Transportation widens roads for progress, it often condemns homes and tears them down. All of those construction materials use to end up in the landfill, but UDOT found a partner that is putting those materials to good use.

“It’s a benefit all the way around,” said Ed Blake, CEO of Salt Lake Valley Habitat for Humanity.

He was standing in front of one of 26 homes just off of I-15 in Midvale that were slated for demolition. Many of the materials inside still have value for people doing remodeling jobs, and even home builders.

So, Salt Lake Valley Habitat for Humanity now takes whatever it can use. Until several years ago, everything would have been thrown out.

“When they were taking these houses down… they were taking everything to the landfill,” said Blake.

Salt Lake Valley Habitat for Humanity and UDOT got together six years ago to start reusing the building materials for several benefits.

“We will go in and take all of the materials out of these homes that we think can benefit the public,” said Blake.

AmeriCorps volunteers take out everything that can be reused in Habitat homes or sold at the Habitat Restore in Salt Lake City. In the Midvale home, they had already taken out the vanities and the sinks from the bathroom, and in the kitchen they were taking out the stove, the dishwasher and countertops.

“This gives us a chance to do something good with those homes,” said John Gleason, UDOT spokesman.

In the midst of an affordable housing crisis, tearing down homes to expand roads has negative consequences. Gleason said, this partnership makes a difference.

“If it wasn’t for this partnership, this is all material that would be wasted. It would be on its way to the landfill.”
“They’re sold at a value to the public,” said Blake of the reusable construction materials.

They’re sold in the Habitat for Humanity ReStore at 1300 South 500 West in Salt Lake City, open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

“The public can come in and buy any of these items,” Gleason said.

That money helps fund new homes for Habitat for Humanity. Cabinets and appliances from those homes in Midvale show up in the store each day. Tubs, toilets and sinks are on sale, starting at $5.

“They move pretty quickly. Nothing lasts long here,” said Alan Jacobson, manager of ReStore. “This is a great place to find low-cost renovation needs. If you’re on a budget and you need to do it quick, this is a great place because we have so much. Just bring your measuring tape.”

“I’ll always come here first,” said Steve Cardon, who remodels homes as a hobby. “I buy electrical wire, sockets, junction boxes, lighting fixtures.”

He said he likes recycling materials and supporting Habitat for Humanity.

“I like the concept of reusing, and so forth,” he said. “It’s also just a really great way for someone to reduce the price of their home remodeling projects.”

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Materials From Condemned Homes Can Be Bought For Recycling