Abstract Currently, construction and demolition waste (C&D waste) is a worldwide issue that concerns not only governments but also the building actors involved in construction activity. In Spain, a new national decree has been regulating the production and management of C&D waste since February 2008. The present work describes the waste management model that has inspired this decree: the Alcores model implemented with good results in Los Alcores Community (Seville, Spain). A detailed model is also provided to estimate the volume of waste that is expected to be generated on the building site. The quantification of C&D waste volume, from the project stage, is essential for the building actors to properly plan and control its disposal. This quantification model has been developed by studying 100 dwelling projects, especially their bill of quantities, and defining three coefficients to estimate the demolished volume (CT), the wreckage volume (CR) and the packaging volume (CE). Finally, two case studies are included to illustrate the usefulness of the model to estimate C&D waste volume in both new construction and demolition projects.