First, I went to a luncheon seminar called "Demystifying Resins" given by 3Form. This doesn't sound exciting, but samples of their materials were! We studied various kinds of plastics (many with high % of recycled content) made with combinations of beautiful translucent color, cool textures, and/or embedded materials like grasses, flower petals, or anything you like, really. Very exciting to a designer. My favorite panel had strips of white-with-color-fleck paper from recycled 3Form catalogues. (In this photo the background looks white, really it's clear.)
image borrowed from 3Form's online catalogue
Second, I learned about a program call ZeroLandfill to recycle or upcycle architectural materials to artists...
Theaters take note!
On September 16, 23, & 30 design firms with reusable architectural materials like tile samples or carpet, etc. can drop off these materials at Corporate Floors; on the next days, September17, 24 & October 1 & 8, from 12:00-3:00 artists or others in the community (non-profit-theaters-cough) can haul 'em home for reuse. Most materials will be sample sizes, but sometimes small pieces can be useful: I can testify that tile samples make great mosaic table tops!
image borrowed from ZeroLandfill
More info if you click the Dallas ZeroLandfill Facebook page, but I'll get back to you with, you know, like, an actual address as soon as I find one.