Deconstruction hailed as answer for ailing cities

It’s all part of “deconstruction,” a method of taking down buildings that is growing in popularity across the country. Deconstruction is an alternative to demolition: Derelict buildings get torn down piece-by-piece, then those pieces are sold.

Advocates hail deconstruction as a win-win that is more economical and environmentally friendly than demolition. They say it creates needed jobs and can help depressed cities turn things around.

“The systematic deconstruction and dismantling of buildings has a profound role in transforming communities,” said Anne Nicklin, executive director of the Building Materials Reuse Association, based in Chicago.