About 70 percent of construction and demolition waste ends up in landfills. Although some materials, including concrete and steel, are separated for recycling at waste transfer stations and landfills, many additional materials have the potential to be salvaged, reused, or recycled.
Construction and demolition projects can also reveal hazardous materials, such as asbestos, items containing mercury or lead like fluorescent light bulbs and batteries, appliances, electronics, paint and pesticides. Managing these types of hazardous wastes properly is important in protecting public health and the environment and is required by law.
Hennepin County offers pre-demolition inspections to help ensure that regulated materials are removed prior to demolition and provides an inspection report to further explain contractor responsibilities and follows up with disposal documentation.
Deconstruction Grant Program
Deconstruction provides an opportunity to divert up to 85 percent of construction and demolition waste and provides numerous environmental and social benefits compared to standard demolition. Compared to standard demolition techniques that use mechanical equipment to knock down structures, the additional labor costs and time with deconstruction can be a deterrent. Hennepin County's newly established grant program helps make deconstruction a more affordable option by offering up to $5,000 for deconstruction projects. Hennepin County allows those contractors or property owners that have set up a pre-demolition inspection with Hennepin County to apply for such grants. Grants are available for demolition or renovation projects on residential properties up to 4 units that are 250 square feet or larger on structures built prior to 1950. More detailed information about eligibility requirements can be found Hennepin County's website.