Ski resort demolition favors deconstruction, reuse and recycling

Several buildings at the Steamboat Resort are undergoing demolition as part of LEED redevelopment.

The owners of a ski resort in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, are opting for deconstruction, reuse and C&D recycling during an ongoing demolition project rather than send usable material to landfill, Steamboat Pilot & Today reports.

Operated by Steamboat Ski & Resort Corp., the Steamboat Resort situated on Mount Werner is a popular vacation destination offering skiing and other outdoor activities in addition to lodging, shopping and various restaurants.

Several buildings at the base area of the park are undergoing demolition, which is nearly complete. This demolition will make way for new redevelopment projects that are projected to be completed by summer 2023.

Colorado Cleanup Corp., Englewood, Colorado, is the demolition contractor tasked with tearing down several buildings at the resort, including snow sports school buildings and a gondola. According to the Steamboat Resort, the company was selected partly for its experience in deconstruction.

After the ski season ended this spring, Steamboat Ski & Resort Corp. Director of Sustainability and Community Engagement Sarah Jones along with Sustainability Coordinator Mac Moody assessed 1,400 metal lockers located on-site and labeled them either “keep,” “donate” or “recycle.” After reaching out to area nonprofits, the resort was able to send 90 lockers for reuse, 300 lockers were set aside to be reused in a new ski building being built on the premise, and the rest were sent to Axis Steel in Craig, Colorado, to be recycled.

Beyond the lockers, Jones and Moody are taking the same approach to diverting electronics, appliances, furniture, lighting and other equipment.

According to the Steamboat Pilot & Today report, employees and community members were offered furniture, appliances, materials and other items from the buildings before demolition began.

Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Summit County, Colorado, picked up two truckloads of appliances and furniture from the site, while vinyl banners were donated to a Denver company that reuses the material in new banners. Through Steamboat Ski & Resort Corp.’s efforts, less than 10 percent of furniture and appliances generated from the buildings went to landfill.

Additionally, 2,400 fluorescent light tubes were sent to Brite Ideas Bulb Recycling in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, for recycling, and some old electronics, which are required to be recycled under Colorado law, were sent to Blue Star Recyclers in Boulder.

“Everything we could think of to try to reuse, repurpose or give away, we tried really hard to do that before the demolition. That was really fun to be able to give away as much as we could,” Jones says.

“We could have saved more of the building supplies if we had a local architectural salvage company [that would pick up the materials],” she continues.

Of the 515 dump truck loads of C&D and waste materials generated from the demolition of the buildings, 225 were composed of concrete and sent to a nearby facility that is using it to produce new concrete. The 70 dump truck loads of steel generated were sent to Axis Steel for recycling. The remaining 220 loads of waste materials were transported to a local landfill

For the redevelopment slated for the site, Jones says the resort is pursuing LEED silver certification through its work with East West Partners, Steamboat Springs, and Gensler, which has an office in Denver.

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