Attention Preservationist Friends of TRP

The ReUse People SpecialsBy Ted Reiff

I love history, and over the years have aquired a pretty thorough command of it. So, it's gratifying to know that I'm helping to preserve history by salvaging building materials and, as a consultant, promoting adaptive reuse and historical preservation.

What troubles me is that many professional and lay preservationists think The ReUse People is the enemy—just one short step from the landfill.

I want to set the record straight.

Many cities and towns require that buildings slated for demolition or substantial modification undergo a historic review process. For example, most communities on the North Shore of Chicago fall into this category, and there are many more examples. The review process often takes a year or more.

The time it takes to complete new plans and receive approval from zoning and building departments further slows the process. When owners are finally allowed to proceed, more often than not they choose traditional smash–and–dash demolition over deconstruction in order to avoid further delays. A full deconstruction takes eight to 10 times longer than demolition and requires a greater number of skilled workers. Unfortunately, the cost in historical terms is considerable if valuable architectural components end up in a landfill.

If a preservation or historic society's bid to save a particular building is unsuccessful, the intelligent, preservationist alternative would be to have the building deconstructed. Over the years TRP-certified deconstruction contractors have salvaged many such buildings, or have provided owners with written specifications on which elements to salvage and how. Examples include a 1937 estate designated the finest example of Georgian Colonial architecture on the West Coast and two 1932 gymnasiums on the San Francisco City College campus.

In addition, several TRP-certified deconstruction contractors have access to specialized crews called TRP Rapid Deconstruction Strike Teams, which are capable of mobilizing quickly to places where historical buildings are endangered. When contacted, strike teams immediately prepare bids that will always match or be below the demolition bid. For more information and a full description of the services provided by strike teams, visit

By revising their attitude toward deconstruction, preservation enthusiasts not only increase their ability to safeguard history, they also gain opportunities to reduce landfill waste, provide employment opportunities and contribute to a cleaner environment.

Specials of the Month

At the Oakland warehouse we are featuring single cabinets and Douglas fir lumber. Receive 25% off the price of any single cabinet (no sets) or Douglas fir 2x4 in the warehouse through March 31.
The ReUse People Specials
The Los Angeles warehouse is featuring interior doors. Purchase one interior door at the regular price and receive a second interior door of the same or lesser value, FREE. Offer good through March 31.
The ReUse People Specials

New Inventory

The Oakland warehouse has a large supply of attractive 3x3-ft carpet tiles.


New inventory at the Los Angeles warehouse includes a solid porcelain farmer’s sink and Craftsman-style windows in various sizes.

The ReUse People Specials The ReUse People Specials

Location and Contact Information

TRP ReUse Warehouse - Oakland
9235 San Leandro Street
Oakland, CA  94603
(510) 383-1983; toll-free 888-588-9490
Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00-6:00 Closed Sunday

TRP ReUse Warehouse - Los Angeles
3015 Dolores Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90065
Hours: Mon-Fri 10:00-5:00; Sat 10:00-4:00

Please visit our partnering warehouses:

The ReUse Warehouse
1400 East Geer Street
Durham, NC 27704
(919) 219-4913
Hours: Mon-Fri, 2:00-6:00; Sat, 9:30-5:00

Second Chance Building Materials Center
1423 West Grove Street
Boise, ID 83702
(208) 331-2707
Hours: Mon-Sat, 9:00-6:00; Sun, 12:00-5:00

Roaring Fork Valley Habitat for Humanity
7025 Hwy 82
Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
(970) 945-7733
Hours: Mon-Fri, 10:00-5:30; Sat, 10:00-5:00; Sun, 11:00-4:00

Stardust Building Supply
3901 E. Thunderbird Road
Phoenix, AZ 85032
(602) 459-9803
Hours: Mon-Sat, 8:00-6:00; Sun, 10:00-4:00

Habitat for Humanity ReStore, Salt Lake Valley,
1276 South 500 West
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
(801) 263-0136
Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00am-6:00pm; closed Sunday

Habitat for Humanity ReStore, Summit & Wasatch Counties
6280 N. Silver Creek Drive, Silver Summit, UT
(435) 487-9015
Hours: Wed-Sat 10:00-6:00; closed Sunday

Recycle Utah
1951 Woodbine Way Park City, UT 84060
(435) 649-9698
Hours: Mon-Sat 8:00-5:30; Sun 10:00-4:00

Reuse Depot
50 West Madison
Maywood, IL 60153
(708) 223-0502
Hours: Wed-Mon 10:00-6:00p; Closed Tuesdays

New England Reuse
400 Sackett Point Rd
North Haven, CT 06473
(203) 230-2638
Hours: Mon-Fri 9:00-5:00p; Saturday 9:00-1:00p

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