With Public Place Work Underway, Safety Questions Remain
As we noted on Friday, expected work has started on the Public Place site between Smith Street and Gowanus Canal. Workers are clearing shrubbery and brush and Bovis Lend Lease (the same firm involved in the fatal accident at the Trump Soho condo hotel recently) is removing concrete from the site. The prep work is expected to take several months. Residents are concerned that dust and debris from the site is contaminated, although it's unclear if any surface contamination exists on the former Manufactured Gas Plant site. (There is significant toxic contamination underground.) In any case, on Friday, one resident wrote us expressing concern that "dust is blowing off the site." On March 20, citing the fact that work was about to begin, Council Member Bill de Blasio wrote a letter to Housing and Preservation Commissioner Shaun Donovan with a long list of safety questions. It is unclear if HPD supplied any answers before work started. An image of part of the letter is below.