Workers as 363 Bond Street — one of the buildings soon to be torn down to make way for the Lightstone Group’s 700-unit apartment complex — have been performing asbestos abatement over the course of the past week. Men in full-body navy blue suits and gas masks have been spotted atop the roof during regular work hours, drilling, scraping and carting away the scraps. Langan Engineering is overseeing the asbestos remediation efforts.
As I watched the workers perform their duties in today’s nasty, wintry mix of weather I couldn’t help but wonder: if asbestos is such a dangerous substance that it requires those who handle it to wear full body protective suits and gas masks, should I be worried about my own health and that of my fellow Gowanus neighbors? As someone who lives and works a literal stone’s throw from these buildings, I am genuinely concerned.
This article on the website of the law firm Weitz and Luxenberg sheds some light on what exactly the asbestos abatement process entails. I have seen the workers building what look to be contained isolation sheds on the rooftop of 363 Bond. But seeing as this is the company that began work without any permits I wouldn’t be surprised if corners are being cut here and there. Given, living next to the highly toxic canal is probably not great for anyone’s respiratory health in the first place… but no need to make it even worse.
Meanwhile workers across 1st Street at 365 Bond are expanding the construction barrier from where it was previously — on the sidewalk, a foot or two out from the building — to extend several feet into the street. Workers had plastic orange and white barriers in place and were erecting steel poles in the middle of Bond Street late in the afternoon on Monday.