This week lots of work has been done on the Mills Street side of the building. The south area well is essentially complete, and forms to contain concrete pours are being moved from the south to the north area well. Temporary stairs have been set up so workers can move up and down the north area well. This work has the unfortunate side effect that large, diesel-powered equipment is operating very close to the air intakes for the Daniels wing, which has resulted in significant intake of diesel exhaust. Carbon-monoxide monitors are in place in locations within the building and have not indicated dangerous levels, but the nauseating fumes are very unpleasant. Workers are doing their best to reduce use of diesel-powered equipment near the air intake.
The driveway to the chemistry loading dock is now open and should remain open for the rest of the project. (The temporary driveway from University Avenue is also open but will soon be closed so that excavation for the new tower can begin.) Charter Street is still closed to through southbound traffic, so anyone turning left into Charter from University can only go to the loading dock or turn around and go back to University Avenue. Vehicles on Charter Street will also encounter heavy equipment, as seen in the photos below, and the loading-dock driveway will remain unpaved until the ground thaws in spring. Please do not use the loading-dock driveway unless you need to deliver something large to the loading dock.
Work in the demolition zone where the library and lecture rooms were located slowed this week because a pipe at the sub-basement level contained mercury and required careful abatement. All the water draining from the Daniels wing ended up in this pipe, as did significant quantities of broken glass and mercury (most likely from when mercury thermometers were in use in the teaching labs many years ago). In a photo below a crew from Dirty Ducts, our asbestos and mercury abatement contractor, can be seen manually excavating the pipe in the bottom of the excavation. Later in the week they built a plastic tent because of colder weather. Lengths of pipe are carefully sealed, extracted, and placed in drums for transport to a hazardous waste facility. When mercury abatement is complete excavation for the new tower will swing into high gear.
This information is up-to-date as of Friday afternoon. Email bulletins will be provided as needed.
John Moore and Bob McMahon