Study: Foothills mall redevelopment diverts 76,000 tons of waste from landfill

FORT COLLINS —More than 76,000 tons of waste generated by the redevelopment of the Foothills shopping mall in Fort Collins was diverted from the landfill, according to an independent report by the Institute for the Built Environment at Colorado State University.

The study was a collaboration with the city, the mall developers and CSU, said Joy Wagner, Sustainable Building Associate at the Institute for the Built Environment. “We assisted by auditing and verifying the diversion efforts to ensure the developer met the city’s reuse and recycling requirements,” she said.

The recycling/reuse effort was a condition of the $53 million in public funding of the $300 million project, including such public infrastructure as sidewalks, the Foothills Activity Center inside the mall and the underpass under South College Avenue now under construction.

The project diverted concrete, rock, asphalt, dirt, bricks, metal, wood/lumber and cardboard that wasn’t considered hazardous materials. The 29,000 tons that went to the landfill were either contaminated by hazardous materials such as asbestos or could not be reused or recycled.

With oversight from the city and the Institute for the Built Environment at CSU, the owner/developer —  Alberta Development Partners and Walton Street Capital — worked with the contractor, The Beck Group, to manage deconstruction and salvaging, and track/document recycling and reuse.

Some creative reuses of materials documented in the report:

Sculpture: The steel purple coneflower sculpture at the Gardens on Spring Creek was crafted from salvaged rebar and galvanized metal wainscoting by Josh Jones, sculptor and welding supervisor at Gallegos Sanitation Inc. The sculpture is on display at the Gardens on Spring Creek at its Garden of Lights holiday event through Jan. 8.

Rough lumber: More than 50 trees demolished on site were milled by local furniture maker Baldwin Hardwoods into lumber that was sold to local woodworkers or made into countertops.

Reclaimed wood tables: Local furniture maker Wool Hat Furniture reclaimed gym flooring from the original Youth Activity Center on Monroe Avenue to make picture frames, tabletops, desks and benches. The original basketball floor also adorns the front desk at the new Foothills Activity Center inside the mall.

 

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