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Reduce the demand for virgin materials and minimize waste by virtue of reusing building materials, components and products (controlling the material source), and/or by designing with disassembly in mind (controlling reuse after the life of the building).

Use of prefabricated and disassemblable modules. Use of salvaged materials such as steel beams, brick, paneling, doors, frames, cabinetry and furniture.

Design for Disassembly (DfD): Consider prefabricated, disassemblable module design allowing for adaptability and reuse.
Salvaged Materials: Identify opportunities to incorporate salvaged materials and research potential material suppliers.

Design for Disassembly: For some projects and client program requirements the cost benefits of disassembly and/or prefabrication of building and interior components can be significant.
Salvaged Materials: The cost of salvaged materials varies greatly based on the type and rarity of material, distance from project site, and project location. In developed countries the process of reusing salvaged materials can be more costly than the use of new materials due to high cost of labor involved in recovering and reprocessing. For projects that include demolition of an existing building, salvaging materials from the demolition site reduces both landfill tipping fees and new material costs.

Design for Disassembly: DfD is particularly well suited for projects with a short life span such as residential sales centers; disassembly allows buildings such as Seattleā€™s South Lake Union Discovery Center to be relocated and reused in a new location after the end of their lifespan. ( Modular, disassemblable construction also allows buildings to adapt as program requirements change; see for a theoretical example of disassemblable and adaptable modular housing.
Salvaged Materials: Certain salvaged material may have high embodied qualitative and/or cultural value and may be worth the higher cost compared to new, inferior materials.

Calculate cost for reprocessing and transportation. For salvaged materials, consider possible liability associated with potential toxic contamination.

4.3.3 Adaptive Reuse