Milwaukee ordinance calls for deconstruction

Homes built before 1930 must be deconstructed and materials salvaged starting Jan. 1, 2018.

November 9, 2017

An approved ordinance in Milwaukee is designed to keep construction and demolition (C&D) debris out of landfills while still promoting new infrastructure, a report by On Milwaukee says. One to four-family homes built before 1930 that are slated for demolition must be deconstructed rather than torn down.

The Common Council approved the ordinance with the hopes that it will boost employment opportunities, save old growth wood and other materials used in aging homes, keep material out of landfills and keep landfill tipping fees paid by taxpayers low. The report says the rule still go into effect Jan. 1, 2018.

The ordinance was introduced by Alderman Robert Bauman, who is also a member of the council’s Historic Preservation Commission. He says in the report that the ordinance will also cut carbon emissions and prevent asbestos, dust and other hazardous substances released by mechanical demolition from becoming airborne.

New Land Enterprises, Milwaukee, is currently deconstructing a building that formerly housed Renaissance Books, the report says. WasteCap and Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore are also working to salvage building materials in the Milwaukee area.