Recycling center will host second weddings

The four words on the sign at BRING Recycling tell you what the nonprofit organization does: "Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Rethink."

But maybe it's time to add one more word that begins with the 18th letter of the alphabet: Remarry.

"We need Elizabeth Taylor to get married for the seventh time," said BRING's executive director, Julie Daniel.

Actually, if Liz ties the knot again it would be marriage No. 9. But who's counting?

Daniel was talking about The Chapel of Second Chances, a soon-to-be-added feature at BRING's latest project, the Garden of Earthly Delights.

The 8,500-square-foot garden, scheduled to be done sometime next year, is being designed by Chambers Construction as an interactive outdoor learning space to teach sustainable gardening and living skills. It is part of BRING's $2 million Planet Improvement Center that it opened in 2007.

Daniel and other BRING employees and volunteers watched as Chambers and Hamilton Construction crew members used a large crane to lower four 3,500-pound pieces salvaged from Gold Beach's historic Isaac Lee Patterson Bridge that will be used as garden walls.

But it's what was not there at the aforementioned chapel, that seems most intriguing.

The Chapel of Second Chances, a longtime project initiated by BRING in conjunction with the University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts, will be installed by UO students within the next month, Daniel said.

It is an open-air structure made of recycled wood, aluminum and fiberglass from BRING and is intended for second-wedding ceremonies and the renewal of vows.

What if someone wants to use it to marry for the first time? "We'd really have to think that through," Daniel said with a laugh. The chapel is "definitely a way to make reuse and recycling fun, and that's our goal," she said.

Photographs of the chapel in an Architecture Week article show students standing underneath rising slabs of horizontally shaped panels supported by posts. The fiberglass panels were once used for an acoustic shell at the Hult Center, Daniel said.

Excitement recently surrounded ornate 20-foot concrete bridge rails that Hamilton Construction of Springfield has been keeping in storage. Ken Maddox, BRING's board president, is Hamilton's business manager. The construction company is trying to find homes for tons of salvaged parts from the restoration of many of Oregon's historic bridges.

Named after Oregon's governor from 1927 to 1929, the Isaac Lee Patterson Bridge was completed across the Rogue River in 1932. It was one of several coastal bridges along Highway 101 designed by famed bridge engineer Conde McCullough.

"We actually designed the garden around them because they're such great architectural pieces and a part of Oregon history," Daniel said.

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