Several years ago, Scott Smith was using old, historic bricks to build a driveway, and a passerby asked if they were for sale. Smith realized people like the look of the repurposed bricks. But most of them were just being thrown away.

Streetscape in New York
A streetscape in Canandiagua, NY. (Courtesy of Experienced Brick & Stone)

Smith: “We saw hundreds and hundreds of truckloads of material being dumped in landfills and buried.”

So Smith founded Experienced Brick & Stone – a company that reclaims street brick before it’s sent to a landfill.

Construction material, especially concrete, produces a lot of global warming pollution when it’s made, so reusing old materials reduces the environmental impact of new construction.

Plus, Smith says many older products are more durable than those made today.

Smith: “For example, street brick that has been in a street for 100 years is still just as usable as the day it was made. And modern-day pavers are good for maybe 15, 20 years.”

… and reusing it saves a bit of history in the process.

Smith: “Our favorite projects are public projects. So the street bricks being used in the streetscape where they add a lot of history into a small town main street. The public can walk down that street and see the history and feel the history of the material and the quality of it.”

”‘Street Click To Tweet

Adding soul to new streets, without adding to global warming.

Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media.


Bridgett Ennis

Bridgett Ennis is co-founder of ChavoBart Digital Media, an audio and video production firm with a focus on scientific and environmental media. ChavoBart Digital Media contributes original reporting, audio...