Upcycling and Using Urbanite



Chances are good that at this moment, close to wherever you live, there’s a pile of broken up concrete just waiting for a good home.  Most often it started life as a sidewalk, driveway or parking area but was recently demolished and is now waiting to be carted off to the landfill.  We call this material, “Urbanite” and love working with it.

New concrete is pricey and has a big environmental footprint (high embodied energy) what with all the mining and the heating involved to make Portland cement as well as its transport in big rigs. Therefore, urbanite is a good alternative for many projects.  In this article I’ll share some tips and uses of this abundant, free, salvageable urban waste material.  At our urban homestead I’ve used it for the bases of cob walls, foundations of earthen (cob) ovens, borders for our gardens and for our little front yard pond, paths, and as a parking surface.  We use it regularly as stem walls on cob buildings, too.

Finding Urbanite

Mostly I’ll see a pile somewhere in my travels around town and, if I’ve got a hankering for some, I’ll check it out and maybe come back with the truck to haul it home.  Everyone (no exceptions!) is overjoyed to get rid of busted, heavy old concrete instead of lugging it to the dump and paying to dispose of it.  Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are also great options.  Search for “concrete."

Using Urbanite 

General Tips:

5/31/2019 9:49:53 AM

Awesome idea. More pictures...please!

Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

50 Years of Money-Saving Tips!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS for 50 years and counting, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters