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Nonprofit Turns Old Amtrak Seats into Handbags

People for Urban Progress takes materials like old Amtrak train seats and repurposes them into new, high-end products.

People for Urban Progress (PUP), an Indianapolis-based nonprofit, takes materials such as old Amtrak train seats and repurposes them into products like high-end handbags.

Recycling Today reports that when Amtrak, Washington, decided to refurbish the inside of 100 train cars from the Acela Express, Amtrak’s senior sustainability manager sent PUP a few old leather seats. The seats were dirty—some had gum, coffee and ice cream smears, but out of that came an opportunity to give the leather scraps new life.

Recycling Today has more details:

Do you ever wonder where old Amtrak train seats end up?

When it’s time to update train cars, the old seats are sent to Atlanta to get disassembled. The cushions go to a carpet recycler in Indianapolis and the leather seats go to People for Urban Progress (PUP), an Indianapolis-based nonprofit that recycles and repurposes material into projects that benefit the city.

PUP’s recycling team takes the worn leather seats, cleans them up using an eco-friendly dry cleaning process, cuts them down and turns them into high-end handbags.

Read the full article here.

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