Thursday, May 1, 2008

Work Resumes on Deutsche Bank Building Where Firefighters Died

AP--The city on Wednesday lifted a stop-work order at a condemned skyscraper across from ground zero that had been in effect since a fire there killed two firefighters eight months ago.

The Department of Buildings removed the order after contractors spent several weeks building new fire control systems at the 26-story former Deutsche Bank building.

The building was heavily damaged on Sept. 11, 2001, when the World Trade Center’s south tower collapsed into it, leaving a trail of toxic debris. Hundreds of remains of Sept. 11 victims were found in the past two years while regulators battled over how to dismantle the building and remove the toxic debris.

The Aug. 18, 2007, fire, believed to have been started by a construction worker’s discarded cigarette, led to a grand jury criminal probe and shut down work on the building.

The Lower Manhattan Development Corp., the state agency that owns the tower, said 300 asbestos removal workers will begin six-day-a-week shifts to clean 19 floors that still need to be cleaned of toxic material.

Deconstruction of the tower’s 26 remaining floors won’t begin until the toxic debris is removed. The LMDC said it hopes to have the building completely dismantled by the end of the year, more than two years after originally planned. One of five office towers planned at the trade center complex is expected to be built at the site.


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