Design for Deconstruction

June 1, 2004
Publication: Modern Steel Construction
Author(s): Christopher Hewitt Michael Horman, Ph.D. Bradley Guy

Designing for deconstruction or disassembly is an important part of green design and the closed-loop building materials cycle. Material waste produced from new construction, renovation and demolition is 25%-30% of the total waste produced each year in the United States and U.K. (EPA 1996). Of this waste stream, 92% is from renovation and demolition and 8% is from new construction. Many products that are sent to the landfills have a salvage value that can generate a profit from the demolition process, or at at least eliminate the tipping fees paid to landfills to accept the disposed material. As salvage markets continue to grow, economic and ecological conditions are likely to dictate that today’s buildings be preserved, refurbished, reused or broken down into salvageable and reusable components rather than demolished at the end of their useful life. In this scenario, buildings designed for deconstruction will have the greatest value (Fishbourne 1998).

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Services: Structural Design