A Santa Barbara resort owner has decided to share some very distinctive roofing tiles for the benefit of families in need of affordable housing. Rick Caruso, who is redeveloping the famed Miramar Hotel in Montecito, announced early this month that 12 tractor truckloads of the trademark blue shingles from the historic hotel will be delivered to the Deconstruction and Reuse Network.
The organization, whose mission is to promote and facilitate environmental deconstruction practices, has partnered with Habitat for Humanity of Southern Santa Barbara County as well as with Corazon, a ministry providing homes for residents of Baja California.
Caruso’s donation of unused roofing-153 pallets kept on hotel property in case repairs were needed-will now adorn roofs in Tijuana and Tecate. Any extra tiles not required for Corazon’s project will be sold, and the proceeds forwarded to Habitat for Humanity. And so, instead of taking their usual route to a landfill, the 204,000 square feet of roof tiles began their journey southward last week. According to Corazon’s director of operations in Mexico, Victor Tapia-Montano, the surplus shingles will prove useful to more than 75 families whose roofs need patching, five families that need new homes, and 15 families who need materials for additions to existing homes. “With winter just around the corner, it will help families repair their roofs,” Tapia-Montano said. “We do not receive shingles that we can donate back to participants very often; most are used to build new homes. [The donation] will definitely brighten their winter.”
Caruso, who bought the Miramar from hotelier Ty Warner, is expected to begin construction on a new resort on the property early next year. “We were really pleased to be approached by the Deconstruction and Re-Use Network about reusing the roof tiles and to partner with a great local organization,” Caruso said in a press release. “This donation is a real winner for everyone-it keeps the roofing material out of the landfill, it puts the shingles to good use helping to provide or improve housing for those who need a helping hand, and it begins to clear the site so we can move forward on bringing back the heritage of the Miramar.”