Sunday, July 12, 2015
Taking a Step Towards Reuse
One central theme of the Veblen House project is reuse. This can be seen most obviously in the form of saving and repurposing a remarkable historic house, but also plays out in small everyday ways, like the salvaging and repurposing of this climbing wall. Part of a backyard play set, it was put out for the trash in my neighborhood. As it happens, there's a muddy stretch of trail between the Veblen House and cottage that could use a boardwalk, and this looked to be perfect for the purpose.
With the handholds removed, it was rolled into place on a wheelbarrow similarly rescued from the curb. Another piece was added, meaning that about 100 pounds less "stuff" got hauled to the landfill, and we no longer have to dodge the mud. It also saved the time and materials that a newly constructed boardwalk would have required.
Imagination and re-visioning stand between an economy's phenomenal productivity and a bulging landfill. Resourcefulness means fewer resources are needed to achieve the same result. The climbing board spent years offering a challenge to kids. Now it offers kids and adults easy passage over a former challenge. What more can we ask, really, from a boardwalk or from ourselves, than to change the world one step at a time?
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