Mall Renovation Project will Recycle Half of Materials

Mall Renovation Project will Recycle Half of Materials

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- What's old will be new again. As The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints redevelops two downtown malls, contractors for the church plan to recycle about half of what makes up the current structures.

"It takes more time and more care to do this, but it's the right thing to do," said Grant Thomas, director of construction services for Property Reserve Inc., the LDS church's real-estate arm.

The church will spend the next four years and $1 billion to replace Crossroads Plaza and the ZCMI Center mall with the 20-acre City Creek Center, a development featuring retail, office and residential space.

The demolition work will knock down most of the buildings on the two blocks leaving more than 200,000 tons of concrete, marble, steel, drywall and other materials on each block.

About 55 percent of the rubble will find a new life. Concrete, marble, stone and other masonry will be ground down and used as road base and fill material at other construction sites, and steel frames will be sold as scrap metal.

"The idea is to divert away from the landfill as much as we possibly can, because the landfill is obviously a finite resource, and this effort is geared toward a more sustainable development," Thomas said.

Only a handful of materials won't be reusable, including drywall and insulation.

The sorting process is mostly done by machine and in some instances it will be possible to tear down recyclable materials separately from non-recyclables, so the material ends up in already sorted piles.

With other parts of the buildings, workers will have to manually sort through piles and pull out the recyclables.

Recycling will add to the cost of the project, but officials said they have no estimates as to how much more it will cost. The church always planned to recycle its waste, so that's how costs were predicted.

Besides recycling material from the demolished buildings, historic material such as pillars, columns and facades will be saved.

The historic facade of the original ZCMI store and the sandstone and wood Amussen building that is now the base of the Key Bank building will be stored during construction and will become part of the new development.

Information from: Deseret Morning News

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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