Jackpot for Habitat for Humanity

Demolitions are nothing new for NorLanders, especially if you are a part of Pacific Demolition. There was nothing special about working on the refurbishment of an apartment building on Davie Street in early August 2020. However, an unexpected human impact of the renovation work came to light as demolition crews mobilized the site.


Operating as a rental building since 1958, some tenants had occupied their units for over 40 years. With the renovations scheduled to last for approximately three years and include upgrades to the building envelope, the existing tenants had to be evicted to facilitate the work.


Many of the 58 suites, covering 15 floors, had been furnished with appliances that had been left behind and were not going to be reused in the finished building. Altogether, it amounted to 30 stoves, 15 fridges and a handful of dishwashers. With the appliances in good working condition, Travis Lawson (Foreman, Pacific Demolition) had a stroke of genius – Habitat for Humanity. The client agreed that Habitat for Humanity was a great place to donate the appliances and help the Greater Vancouver community with affordable options.


Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit organization that helps build and rehabilitate decent and affordable homes, from single-family houses to multi-unit developments. They have been around since 1976 (officially) and have provided housing around the globe in more than 70 countries. As taken from their website, Habitat for Humanity “brings communities together to help families build strength, stability and independence through affordable homeownership.”

They needed 2 truckloads to get it all out of there! Everything was in good shape – it felt wrong to send it for recycling.

We spoke to Travis about where the idea came from, and he emphasized how important it is to reuse and recycle when we can – this is something that NorLand does a lot of. However, if we can help those in need at the same time, that means even more. Habitat for Humanity ReStore was a great way to reuse these appliances instead of scrapping them. Refurbishing them will give members of the Great Vancouver community an affordable way to purchase appliances for their homes. We recently learned that a number of the appliances will be installed at a new development of 19 townhomes for Habitat Partner Families in Mission, BC. Again, the total of 30 stoves, 15 fridges and handful of dishwashers will help many families!


It is this kind of innovation that we want to recognize and encourage across NorLand – to think about the environment, members of our communities, and build relationships with other organizations. Our Mission speaks on connecting bright minds to craft meaningful solutions to address needs of valued partners and clients, and this is exactly what Pacific Demolition has done. We can connect to other partners and clients by making small changes in our thinking (reusing and recycling) to make a big difference and build trust in our communities.


Thank you to Travis Lawson, Kate McCann and everyone else at Pacific Demolition for this wonderful way of giving back! The rest of us NorLanders can take note and see how we can help others to build enduring communities, together.