Pandemic inspired DIY projects generate tons of discarded items

Photo courtesy: David Willey

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — At Taylor’s Do it Centers around the region, many days have resembled Black Friday since the pandemic began.

It started with the home and garden department when families carved out flower beds and replaced them with produce and herb gardens.

(Photo courtesy: Taylor’s Do It Center)

As summer turned to fall, families tweaked their outdoor living spaces by bringing in firepits and other features to keep guests and friends entertained and socially distanced.

(Photo courtesy: Taylor’s Do It Center)

The focus also moved inside for Do It Yourself projects which created a run on interior paint.

“Paint projects were huge; people buying a lot of paint and repainting rooms in their homes,”said Joe Taylor President and CEO of the chain — which includes 11 Taylor’s Do It Centers in Hampton Roads and eight Pleasants Hardware stores in the Richmond area.

According to a recent Craftsman survey, 51 percent of respondents picked up a new DIY skill this year and 53 percent will complete those projects by year’s end.

The local hardware store chain was forced to reach out to new vendors to keep up with demand while other businesses, such as restaurants, have been forced to close.

“We’ve been so fortunate to be an essential retailer and be allowed to open while so many others haven’t,” said Taylor.

‘Out with the old and in with the new’ has created tons of discarded materials that have to be handled by public works crews.

(Photo courtesy: City of Virginia Beach)

In Virginia Beach this spring, workers staged a mini strike because of a pandemic bonus dispute. The matter was resolved after 10 On Your Side exposed how the pandemic had taken a toll on workers.

From April to September, the City of Virginia Beach recorded more than 135,000 visits to the landfill, which represents a 61 percent increase in the number of people who are tossing almost everything — including the kitchen sink.

The city is experiencing a dramatic increase in curbside and Landfill and Resource Recovery Center discards.

(Graphic courtesy: City of Virginia Beach)
(Photo courtesy: City of Virginia Beach)

Before you toss those items, city officials ask that you consider others who are less fortunate.

“If you took down a ceiling fan and it still works — maybe just replaced it with something newer, Habitat for Humanity is a great resource. Reach out to Goodwill, reach out to the Salvation Army — any of the donation centers in our area could use those items that you are getting rid of maybe to supplement people who need things like that,” he continued.

(Photo courtesy: David Willey)

For rules and regulations on how to discard appliances, furniture, computers, hazardous materials, interior materials, construction materials, and more, see the links below for information from the seven cities.

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