Increasing recycled content in construction, Bristol, UK
Bristol’s Building Schools for the Future pFI programme consists of four new schools with a value of around £120 million. The local authority was keen to include significant recycled material in construction and commissioned the Waste Resources and Action Programme (WRAP) to conduct market research into local suppliers and materials. This survey found that at least half the materials necessary to construct the buildings could be sourced with above average recycled materials at cost-competitive rates.
Detailed analysis using three secondary school designs revealed that total recycled content of over 15% could be achieved at no extra cost. This gave Bristol City Council the confidence to include a minimum requirement for recycled materials in their Invitation to Negotiate. Combined with other waste reduction initiatives, Bristol City Council calculated the reduced waste disposal costs, avoidance of landfill tax and lower material wastage delivered an overall cost saving estimated at £650,000 (around €820,000). This good practice has been promoted in model procurement documentation and replicated by other Local Authorities in the Building Schools for the Future programme, resulting in thousands of tonnes of materials being diverted from landfill.
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