FLINT, MI — The organization overseeing the demolition of hundreds of Flint homes has banned salvagers from entering them and taking materials before they are razed.
Unlike black market copper and metal thieves, there is a legitimate trade in salvaging materials from forgotten homes. Some of these people say there is surely value to be found in the 1,600 homes targeted for demolition in Flint.
“Like banisters and chandeliers and stained glass windows,” said Nick Hoffman. “All those artifacts from the house. The details of the home.”
Hoffman runs Carriagetown Antique Center in Flint. He sees the demand for pieces like this all the time, what he calls architectural salvage.
“A lot of people want the new houses, but they want the vintage look,” Hoffman said.
The Genesee County Land Bank, however, is not allowing people to salvage these homes before teardown, even though some people are inquiring, said Doug Weiland, the executive director of the land bank.
via Salvaging banned at Flint homes scheduled for demolition | MLive.com.
Jim Schulman of Community Forklift and The Building Material Reuse Association recently wrote a beautiful review of the new book Tear Down: A love poem to arson-prone, deindustrialized Flint, Mich. by Gordon Young.
When a book inspires a review that is this poignant and thoughtful, do not hesitate – go out and get it! But first read the entire review on Washington Independent Review of Books.
A love poem to arson-prone, deindustrialized Flint, Mich.
I was halfway through Gordon Young’s absorbing yet wrenching portrait of Flint, Mich., while on a red-eye flight from Seattle to Baltimore with a stopover in Detroit. After I had put the book down to sleep, I awoke in the dark over southern Wisconsin. Perhaps it was the optics of the airplane window or my vantage point above the clouds, but I observed the most delicate new moon I had ever seen. I took it as a portent of hope for the sustainability of communities all over the world, including down-and-out Flint. As the light grew from the incipient sunrise, I made out the outlines of Lake Michigan. In a few minutes, much to my surprise, the whole mitten thumb of eastern Michigan, framed by Saginaw Bay and Lake Huron, laid out before me.
via Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City | Washington Independent Review of Books.