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Cities are now being designed to be recycled

Words by Abi Scaife

More and more cities are being designed to be ‘deconstructed’ when buildings are no longer needed.

What?! Tell me more!

Historically speaking, creating homes and buildings to be later taken apart has always been commonplace - take nomadic civilisations, for example. 

In more recent times, particularly in western countries such as the UK and the US, buildings have become the ‘permanent’ structures we see today - but that isn’t necessarily great for the environment.

How so?

Well, when eventually you want to destroy the buildings - either because it has to be done, or because you want to build something new - you can do it in a matter of hours with the right equipment. 

Unfortunately, the materials are now all broken up and mixed together, meaning they can’t be reused, so they are either burned or sent to the landfill.

So how do we recycle them?

By hiring ‘deconstruction contractors’ - rather than demolishing everything as quickly as possible, these contractors will take apart the buildings over a number of days, preserving as much material as possible. These materials will then go on to create new homes and buildings, eliminating waste, and the need to mine new resources.

While we might be a few years off from this being commonplace, the fact that it is being talked about more and more often is incredibly promising - and hopefully, it will take us one step closer to having circular, recyclable cities.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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