A new demolition permitting option provides contractors and developers greater opportunities to salvage reusable building materials from housing that is being removed. The new permitting process provides early site access to applicants who agree to remove a structure through deconstruction rather than through a standard demolition process. Deconstruction is the systematic disassembly of a building in order to maximize the salvage of reusable building materials first and to recycle materials second. Salvaging reusable building materials reduces the amount of construction waste routed to landfills and reduces the demand on virgin resources. Deconstruction and salvage are more labor and time intensive than standard demolition and many developers opt simply to demolish existing structures rather than incur the delay deconstruction and salvage will impose.
Previously, a demolition permit for housing could be issued only when an associated permit for new housing had also been issued. If, in lieu of demolition, housing is to be deconstructed and building materials salvaged for reuse, DPD may issue a demolition permit prior to issuing the associated new construction permit. This will provide developers more time to deconstruct an existing structure and increase the salvage of reusable building materials. The deconstruction option may be used if a complete building permit application has been submitted (rather than issued); no other reviews are required; and the Director has approved a Waste Diversion Plan. The Waste Diversion Plan, described in Directors Rule 4-2009, needs to document that:
- A minimum of 20 percent of the building materials, by weight and excluding asphalt, brick and concrete, will be reused.
- A minimum of 50 percent of the building materials, by weight and excluding asphalt, brick and concrete, will be reused, recycled or beneficially used.
- One-hundred percent of asphalt, brick and concrete will be reused, recycled or beneficially used.
Upon completion of deconstruction, a final Waste Diversion Report will be required identifying the actual rates of salvaged and recycled materials.