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Salvage Operation Benefits Nonprofits, ESU

May 23, 2019

Lounge furniture, tables, light fixtures, beds and desks (shown below) will find new homes at both Emporia State University and local nonprofit organizations after salvage work ahead of the Abigail Morse demolition and renovation project.

Like any major construction project, Emporia State’s plan to demolish two pieces of the Morse Hall complex and renovate Abigail Morse Hall involves some heavy lifting. The early prep work is designed to reduce waste in the landfill and help area nonprofit agencies.

Work crews from Emporia State University Facilities have spent the last 10 days removing furnishings and equipment from the buildings that can be reused on campus. Today (Thursday, May 23), salvage crews from local and area agencies began removing the remaining materials.

“There are a number of things in the buildings that are not reusable,” said Cass Coughlin, director of ESU Residential Life. “But there is some technology and other items we can reuse. Then we can reduce the waste even more by helping support the work and mission of these other agencies.”

USD 456 Marais des Cygnes Valley is replacing sinks in all the bathrooms in its high school in Melvern. Loading up wall-hung bathroom sinks from Morse will help the district save money, according to Superintendent Joe Sample.

Tables and chairs will be well-used in the Child Visitation and Exchange Center of SOS, Inc., said Connie Cahoone, executive director.

“Our families will be able to sit down and play games, eat meals and have fun together,” she said.

With three ministries to oversee, Lee Alderman has myriad uses for the materials his group will salvage. Residents of Emporia Rescue Mission will enjoy newer bunk beds. Furniture and other items can be stored at Abundant Harvest until they are needed by the organization or by residents furnishing their first apartments. Shiloh House also will benefit from beds, household items and furniture.

“Shiloh has a three-bedroom house that is used to house homeless families,” Alderman said. “We need more beds and furniture there.”

Even more items will go to both Emporia Habitat for Humanity and Topeka Habitat for Humanity, which operates ReStore. Both organizations will resell items to invest back in their local communities.

The job of itemizing the materials available to salvage and organizing the salvage crews’ pickups fell to Mark Runge, director of University Facilities. Recent rains changed some of the salvage logistics.

“Our original plan was to have salvage crews for the nonprofit agencies park their trucks on the lawn east of Abigail Morse Hall,” said Runge. “All of our recent rain, however, made that impossible.”

Because of the rain, a portion of 15th Avenue across the ESU campus was closed to traffic earlier than planned. The street is closed between Silent Joe and the southwest corner of Welch Stadium. It will reopen from May 30 to June 2 to avoid conflict with the Dirty Kanza gravel bicycle race and then close again on Monday, June 3.




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