Council adopts zero-waste demolition strategy

Posted at 3:45pm Tuesday 04 Jun, 2019

The demolition of a Puhoi barn last month was undertaken in accordance with a new Auckland Council strategy to drastically reduce construction waste.

The Rodney Local Board was faced with removing the dilapidated barn in Puhoi Pioneer Memorial Park for safety reasons but aimed to accomplish the demolition without generating any waste for landfill.

Contractor Trow Group was engaged to undertake the demolition. Rather than adopt a ‘wrecking ball' approach, they carefully deconstructed the barn to recover all the reusable corrugated iron and timber.

The Council is currently working towards a similar approach to all its building demolition projects whereby building materials are recovered and recycled rather than being dumped.

Reusable materials can include building fixtures such as seating, light fittings, kitchen and bathroom sinks, as well as important building componentry and materials such as trusses, timber, corrugated iron and steel.

Construction and demolition generates a lot of waste that usually ends up being sent to landfill – currently it accounts for 50 percent of Auckland's total waste stream.

Council estimates that for the year ending June 30, Auckland will have produced 568,935 tonnes of construction and demolition waste – the equivalent of 196 Auckland Town Halls filled to the brim with waste and stacked on top of each other.

Moreover, construction and demolition waste is expected to grow at about 3 percent per annum.

Materials recovered from the Puhoi barn will be redistributed to charities and community groups in Auckland, or they could possibly be sent to the Pacific Islands to assist with reconstruction efforts in the wake of recent cyclones.


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