Nancy Meyer finds boxes of expensive Italian tile on a shelf at Community Forklift. (Katherine Frey/The Washington Post)
Meyer’s part-time job eventually became a full-time mission to get the nonprofit off the ground. She negotiated with the landlord for a lower rent, cleaned up the store, created guidelines to standardize prices and designed internal structures that would make operations more efficient. Because Community Forklift couldn’t afford advertising, she launched a grass-roots marketing campaign to educate the community about environmental issues and promote the nonprofit. Community Forklift still hosts educational programs, including monthly arts festivals and DIY reuse workshops.
Source: Meet the barrier-breaking woman behind a massive house of salvaged treasures – The Washington Post
Community Forklift and its CEO Nancy J. Meyer won a SHINE Award from eBay in the Charitable Business category. Photo courtesy of Community Forklift
Community Forklift is a nonprofit reuse center for building materials, architectural salvage and antiques. The name refers to the organization’s mission “to lift up communities” in the DC area by turning the region’s construction waste stream into a resource stream. “These prizes will help us reach a larger online audience, which means we can do more good here in the DC region!” Meyer wrote on a blog post. “We can keep more materials out of landfills, provide more free materials to neighbors in need, and offer more green jobs to local residents.”
Source: Community Forklift wins small business award from eBay, thanks to its mission and its fans | Hyattsville Life & Times
Unlike demolition, deconstruction requires finesse instead of shear force. Reusable items such as cabinets and flooring can lose their value if they are damaged during the salvage process. To recover a window, for example, workers must remove its interior and exterior trim, cut fasteners in the frame, extricate the window, and store it safely on site until it is transported to a salvage yard.
via Behind the Scenes: The World of Architectural Salvage – Architect Magazine.
Do yourself a favor and read the entire article on Deconstruction in Elevation DC.
Tear down a house and you’ll end up with tons—literally—of garbage.
If a 1,500-square-foot home is demolished, it generates 37 tons of waste–drywall, insulation, flooring, brick, and more.
Much of that garbage goes straight to the landfill. But a movement is slowly growing–helped by industry as well as the nonprofit sector–to save parts of an old home from the landfill. Builders who support this movement say that the extra hassle of “deconstructing” rather than demolishing a home is more than offset by the goodwill it builds among clients. Nonprofits say that deconstruction represents an unprecedented economic opportunity.
Jim Schulman, president of the nonprofit Sustainable Community Initiatives, says that Community Forklift, the 34,000-square-foot reuse warehouse and store it owns, is on track to do $1.7 million is sales this year. Multiply that by the other hundreds of reuse centers nationwide, and he says the deconstruction industry could be a $500 million-per-year economic engine.
via Deconstruction keeps value and dollars in DC’s neighborhoods.
Community Forklift in Edmonston is partnering with Prince George’s County organizations to host “Upcycle Your Life,” a free event designed to lift up the community.
Free resources and workshops will be offered from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the nonprofit thrift store, located on 4671 Tanglewood Drive.
The various free programs at the event include food distribution, health screenings and a workshop on affordable housing.
via Community Forklift hosting “upcycle” event — Gazette.Net.
Every reuse center on the planet should follow Community Forklift’s example of partnering with Maker Fairs. This is a unstoppable combination of creativity, education, and waste reducing fun!
The Reuse Community and the Makers are world changers and together can shift waste consciousnesses.
A Maker Faire features free family activities and innovative projects created by inventors, hackers, crafters, artists, and do-it-yourselfers of all kinds. The festival demonstrates creative and unusual projects and pursuits to encourage attendees to explore their own curiosity and to make something new and different.
via Community Forklift helps sponsor Silver Spring Mini Maker Faire, Sun. Sept. 29, 12-5! | Community Forklift.
A few weeks later, the homemaker showed off the refinished $150 mantel now decorating the brick fireplace in her renovated kitchen. After she sanded the worn piece, its elegant lines emerged from under several coats of paint.
The carved wooden frame hanging above the mantel and the stone tile on the hearth also came from Community Forklift, as did several pieces of furniture in the living room. “This is a way of getting heirlooms without having to inherit things from relatives,” she says.
From the salvaged windows and other recycled elements, she and her husband built a one-room pavilion in a corner of their back yard. “It cost us about $1,500 to complete, compared to the $25,000 that one contractor told us it would take to construct from new materials,” says Derek Liu, 44, a systems engineer.
The type of repurposing practiced by the Lius is growing, as more homeowners look for cost-saving and environmentally friendly ways to renovate. At Community Forklift, sales of salvaged products — from Tiffany-style lamps to toilets — increased from 2011 to 2012 by 46 percent. The eco-conscious home improvement center plans to expand into a nearby 15,800-square-foot warehouse in Prince George’s County in the fall.
via Homeowners turn to salvage renovation – The Washington Post.
Bradley Guy & Benjamin Holsinger teach at The Catholic University of America in the School of Architecture and Planning. They have been working on the Life Cycle Assessment Methods for Building Materials Recovery and Reuse.
They measured the carbon footprint of building material reuse. They focused their study on Community Forklift a reuse center in Edmonton, Maryland.
The above slide shows the CO2 emissions created and reduced by Community Forklift operations.
If you are a reuse center professional, start looking into carbon offset opportunities like the kind they create at Bonneville Environmental Foundation.
Because according to this chart, your reuse center could have an entirely new source of income potential in selling carbon off-sets.
-Sara Badiali RA Posting Editor
Now Hiring! Looking for a friendly Reuse and Outreach Associate
Reuse & Outreach Associate Needed for Local Green Business (Hyattsville, MD)
Position Title: Reuse & Outreach Associate(30–40 hours a week, includes weekend work)
Company: Community Forklift, Thrift Store for Home Improvement
Location: Inside the Washington Beltway, 5 minutes from DC in the Hyattsville area
via Now Hiring! Looking for a friendly Reuse and Outreach Associate | Community Forklift.
Our power is back on, and we’re open!
(Photo: Billy McNeel, Office of Emergency Management)
It sure was a scary microburst (more details here). We are very grateful to all of the PEPCO employees and other folks who have been out there clearing trees and downed electrical lines, the busy EMT and Fire Department crews, and the police officers who risked their necks directing traffic and keeping everyone safe – we saw them out there just minutes after the storm subsided!
via Community Forklift | A Thrift Store for Home Improvement.