MDC ZeroLandfill™ Keeps Interior Design Samples Out of Landfill

Local artists, educators, animal shelters and other non-profit organizations invited to take whatever they can use: carpet, tile, wallpaper samples, fabric and more. The crafters and non-profits get supplies they can afford and we all win when useable material is kept out of landfills. The project needs volunteers to help set up the supply recycling, as well as “customers” to come and get the free samples.

MDC is a one of the world’s largest sources of commercial wall designs and coatings. The Chicagoland firm  is incorporating recycled materials into its portfolio, and setting up a program to help recycle outdated material. Their project,  called ZeroLandfill,  has diverted more than 500,000 pounds of expired specification samples since 2006, from local landfills and re-purposed back into the community. The materials have value for lots of people, from artists, teachers and crafters, to animal shelter and more.

Giselle Walsh, Director of Environmental Affairs for Chicago-based MDC is bringing ZeroLandfill™, a national organization, to Chicago.  ZeroLandfill has diverted and repurposed more than 500,000 pounds of materials samples in 14 cities across the U.S. since the organization was founded in 2006.

MDC’s Walsh is coordinating a volunteer effort within Chicago’s architectural and interior design community. A team of volunteers is hosting a three-phased project to gather, sort and re-distribute expired sample materials to artists, educators, students and other community members who can use them.

Here is how the project will rollout in Chicago:
1) Pollination is the part of the project where local architects and designers invited to drop off expired samples runs from Tuesday, April 10, 5-7:30 p.m. until  Saturday, April 14, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
2) Cultivation is the part of the project where volunteers sort through material begins on Tuesday, April 17, 5-7:30 p.m., and runs until Saturday, April 21, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
3) Harvest is the time when people from the local community are invited to pick up materials they can put to good use, and it runs from Saturday April 28, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m and Saturday, May 5, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Volunteers can contact project organizers by email at

If you are feeling crafty, or know a teacher or artist who could use some free supplies, the Harvest is taking place at the  Chicago Center for Green Technology at 445 North Sacramento Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60612.

Today, many architects and designers in the commercial construction, renovation and design industry realize that sustainability is a top priority for the public and a part of doing business responsibly. For MDC, sustainability means setting up the ZeroLandfill™ project but they are also thinking about new products that are beautiful but environment-friendly. A new wallcovering designs  by Candice Olson features glass beads made from recycled windshields. MDC is also the exclusive distributor of IdeaPaint for commercial use. IdeaPaint turns any smooth surface into a whiteboard, so schools and other organizations can turn chalkboards into whiteboards and reuse them wisely.

ZeroLandfill™ is an award-winning upcycling program that supports the supply needs of local artists and arts educators while reducing pressure on local landfill capacity. Since 2006, the ZeroLandfill project team has partnered with the architectural and interior design community in identifying, diverting from local landfills and re-purposing back into the community over 500,000 pounds of expired specification samples that hold value for other audiences.

Volunteers are welcome to join ZeroLandfill Chicago:

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Posted by on April 13, 2012. Filed under Community, Editor's Choice, Opportunities, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.