The reuse of construction materials, a project currently under construction

The reuse of construction materials, a project currently under construction

Géraldine Berken espère voir la matériauthèque fonctionner en 2025. Midi Libre – Eva Bonnet-Gonnet

The MGR association, based in Alès, is finalizing its project to build a materials library. Due to lack of funds, she is appealing for donations.

The project germinates, and is built. Since the opening of her association Matériauthèque Génération Réemploi (MGR) in November 2023, Géraldine Berken, an adopted Alesian, has been determined to build a warehouse for the recovery of construction waste, sorting, and resale at a minimal price, within the urban area. "To respond to ecological challenges", summarizes Géraldine Berken. "To preserve natural resources, create something of general interest quite simply." A project nearing completion, for the moment.

"Guaranteeing safety in the reuse of materials"

Motivated by an activist aspect, the idea of ​​a materials library caught on with this specialized instructor, formerly employed in the construction sector. By wishing to invest her convictions in a project for the common good, then by becoming aware of an uncontrolled waste of materials and waste from construction (213 million tonnes in France according to the figures included in the business plan), Géraldine Berken joins a widespread trend on the national territory. That of opening a "resource center for construction materials".

This platform, imagined as physical and digital at the same time, would recover so-called "waste" construction sites, surpluses or order errors to resell them at solidarity prices. In certain cases, it also plans to ensure the removal and preparation of materials. "This system also makes it possible to guarantee safety in the reuse of materials, which will be studied, and verified, by employees and volunteers of the structure, specifies Géraldine Berken.

Always with solidarity in mind, the association wishes to boost diversity by storing in a multifunction space that can accommodate, which comes close or far to the valorization of the material. But also by advocating integration, by hiring a minimum of two employees under a part-time integration contract.

Call for help to finalize the project

The Alès Myriapolis Economic Development Agency, the Léo Lagrange Initiatives Incubator, and the ACEGAA du Gard are supporting the project of the MGR association which is missing a crucial piece to see the day. To get started, she needs a warehouse in Alès or on the outskirts, so Géraldine Berken is launching an appeal and also going through crowdfunding on Hello Asso, which will also allow her to build up cash.

The rest already has a solid foundation. "I already have volunteers ready to give their time on the project, an agreement of principle signed between the association and DIY companies during my application for the Alès Audace 2023 competition. Strong partners are also integrated into the project, such as For. Ce Cap Emploi, and Omah Lab, a dynamic innovation laboratory dedicated to the deployment of housing and land development, ecologically and economically.

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