Why was Gadfly thinking of Martin Tower?

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Why did Gadfly send you that silly picture of the Martin Tower site on Sunday?

It was such a nice weekend. Sunny. Spring-like. 090

And as he drove along the site, he suddenly “saw” it as if as new.

It looked so different. It’s fairly nearly cleared now. Have you noticed?

Feels like it’s nearing time for construction to begin.

But does the final project design come before the public again, or have all the final approvals been given?

All of Gadfly’s questions about the site flew back like birds returning north.

  • Are we really going to have 500+ apartments there?
  • Will they be less cookie-cutter looking than the renderings we saw?
  • Will any be “affordable” like the memorable old guy asked at the very tail end of the Nitschmann public meeting?
  • Will the whole area be imperviously paved?
  • Will we get sidewalks along Schoenersville to the Monocacy so there’s a walkable connection from there to North Bethlehem?
  • Will there be a crosswalk or other traffic calming at the foot of the Schoenersville hill?
  • Will there be a recreation trail/path access to Burnside and the trail along the Monocacy?
  • Will there be better pedestrian/bike access to the youth recreation areas along Schoenersville up to Illick’s Mill?
  • Will there be better pedestrian/bike access to Westgate Mall?
  • Will there really be a gas station down by 378?

Sorry if Gadfly is scratching an old sore.

Suffer any damage from the Martin Tower implosion? (75)

(75th in a series on Martin Tower)

Gadfly:

If you know anybody that suffered any damage during the implosion tell them to file their claim sooner rather than later. The implosion company is refusing to pay its claims on a building they did months ago.

https://www.jaxdailyrecord.com/article/blackstone-building-owners-file-lawsuit-over-damage-from-city-hall-implosion

George Lopez

They probably don’t want to release the original data (74)

(74th in a series on Martin Tower)

George Lopez is retired after working twenty years with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Gadfly:

They probably don’t want to release the original data because that could have serious OSHA repercussions to all the people that were required to work that day and were exposed to the cloud of dust. It violates the law regarding exposure to respirable crystalline silica.

George

“Can we please see the original data as gathered by each monitor?” (73)

(73rd in a series on Martin Tower)

Breena Holland is an Associate Professor at Lehigh University in the Department of Political Science and the Environmental Initiative. She is a past and current director of Lehigh University’s South Side Initiative.

Gadfly,

This summary does not present the results in a very helpful way. It would be nice to know the range of concentrations by particle size per monitor. To say that during the implosion maximum concentrations ranged from 9.3 to 33,625 micrograms per cubic meter of air for particles with an average diameter of between .31 and .91 micrometers does not allow us to put the results in the context of any meaningful ambient air regulatory standards, which designate safe levels for particles that measure 2.5 (or 10) micrometers. Assuming the presented numbers were averaged across all four monitors in very different locations, we don’t know where the fallout was worst, and what amount of particulate might have fallen into the creek or an area where people live (vs. what looks like a parking lot on their map).

The results suggest that one PM monitor was inundated with particulate, so I guess we can assume that location was hit the worst, but what were the specific numbers associated with that location? Also, as Mr. Lopez notes, telling us what was not in the air is not the same thing as telling us what was in the air. I guess these data show that the demolition company was not lying when it said it had removed all the asbestos and lead paint, but we already had reason to believe that was true because the DEP went and checked their work. Did they even bother to do a chemical analysis to identify other toxins? I guess we’ll have to wait for the DEP to tell us what else might have been in the air, assuming their monitors were not inundated with so much dust as to also become “overloaded.”

Can we please see the original data as gathered by each monitor? What is here simply conceals any meaningful variation in exposure by location to either homeowners or aquatic resources.

Breena

Breena has way more science than Gadfly has but still not enough. So I say again: The developer’s report is (obviously) going to be questioned. There will be suspicions of some sort of cover-up. Is there some (objective) scientist “out there” in Gadfly-land who can help us understand what the developer and the DEP reports say and don’t say. The developer is probably before the City right now with the next step in design plans, which just as probably will be controversial, and they will be before the public again. This is a good time to be sure the developer was “clean” in terms of claims of safety from the demolition.

Tasting the dust (72)

(72nd in a series on Martin Tower)

ssinsider is known to Gadfly but prefers to remain anonymous.

Gadfly:

The PM didn’t disappear after a half an hour; as Mr. Crownfield said, it blew away. But not just into not nearby neighborhoods. Into faraway ones, too! We could taste the dust on our lips in the south side well into the late afternoon hours (up until the rain started), even when we were not in the direction of the prevailing winds!

When we drove by the site two days ago, and it was slightly breezy, the same thing happened: you could taste the cement (or is it concrete?) dust on your lips! They are telling us that is normal? What does “normal” mean? What does “remarkable” mean? If you ask me, or the nearby neighbors, it has all been pretty remarkable.

ssinsider

The developer’s report is (obviously) going to be questioned. There will be suspicions of some sort of cover-up. Is there some (objective) scientist “out there” in Gadfly-land who can help us understand what the developer and the DEP reports say and don’t say. The developer is probably before the City right now with the next step in design plans, which just as probably will be controversial, and they will be before the public again. This is a good time to be sure the developer was “clean” in terms of claims of safety from the demolition.

 

“Why not just say what was in the dust not what wasn’t in the dust?” (71)

(71st in a series on Martin Tower)

George Lopez is retired after working twenty years with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Gadfly:

Oh Geez. They didn’t even test for respirable silica which is what caused thousands of horrible cancer deaths after the collapse of the WTC. As for the “However, two air samples for asbestos content could not be analyzed due to overloading of particulate. ” Overloading is why they didn’t have air monitoring reports for the “8,000” other projects they imploded. Why not just say what was in the dust not what wasn’t in the dust?

George