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Giving new life to old wood

The call to recycle is not new but how many of us have heeded the call? Here are some inspiring stories about Paramount employees who have been taking action to reuse, repurpose and recycle for a better world.

 

By Teh Hock Lye, Assistant General Manager of Paramount Property’s Product, Development & Innovation Department

I love nature, all things green and wood. Five years ago, I was shocked to see our precious aged chengal wood scattered about at our Berkeley Uptown site and decided to embark on a journey to repurpose the wood.  This became the foundation upon which Paramount’s interior design identity was formed.​​​​​​​

The challenge begins in the selection of wood. As the pieces come in varying sizes and lengths, we have to begin by carefully segregating the pieces for different uses. Transforming such wood into interior design materials also takes longer compared to using commercial wood. This is because old wood usually comes with nails, nuts, holes, and some decay.

Thankfully, we were able to overcome all of this with the engagement of a very passionate carpenter who was willing to take up the challenge. He would painstakingly keep every piece of unused cut wood for other purposes like plaques, souvenirs, and interior design items.

Some wood has been repurposed up to three cycles over the past five years for different uses. For instance, timber flooring has been repurposed to benches, outdoor pavilions, timber platforms, landscape furniture, planter boxes and more.

Co-labs Coworkiing Sekitar26

The timber flooring at Co-labs Coworking at Sekitar26 is made from repurposed wood.

Aged wood at Berkeley Uptown

Piles of aged hardwood salvaged from the old factory at the Berkeley Uptown site.

Sejati Lakeside show unit

We also used the wood in innovative ways to optimise the usage. For instance, some chengal wood planks were cut to form many layers of 6mm thick wood veneer and laminated with plywood to make Co-labs Coworking tables.

I love to work with recycled wood. It is natural material with rich history. Each piece has a story to tell which cannot fade away just because of new fashion and trends.

Besides wood, Teh also a big fan of repurposing plastic. He uses discarded water bottles from Paramount sales galleries for tree grafting, propagating the endangered species of ‘maba buxifolia’ for use in Paramount landscape design (see image below).

Paramount Property recycling old plastic bottle

Old plastic bottles being used for propagation purposes.