[Photo courtesy of Kurt Strahm/Restless]
One of our favorite projects in Williamsburg, partly because the level of its toxicity is almost urban legend, is the one at the corner of N. 12 & Bedford. (Formal address 95 Bedford.) It's destined to become a eight-story rental building with 180 units designed by Architect King of Williamsburg, Hot Karl Fischer. The site is surrounded by a fence through which it is virtually impossible to shoot photos. Kurt Strahm of the blog Restless, who sent this pic giving a magnificent view of what's going on writes:
A picture of the top secret goings-on behind the near seemless fence at the Bedford & N 12th Karl Fischer project. That pile driver's been pounding huge tubes and beams into the toxic mud for weeks -- it sounds like Williamsburg is getting screwed by a huge and brutish f-bot.So it's an apartment building in a desirable spot in the Burg, what's the big freaking whoop?
Someone with an intimate familiarity with the site's history recently wrote Gowanus Lounge:
This lot previously was the site of a paint manufacturing plant owned by NJZ Color and Reichhold Chemical. Reichhold made color paint products there starting before WWII. They produced a variety of lead based paints, including yellow cadmium paint. Both lead and cadmium are highly toxic if inhaled as dust. During WWII, this facility became the source of one-third of the U.S. military’s rust prevention primer, which basically is a coating of lead paint and something called molybdate pigments. Google that one and see what used to be used in these paints. The company went on to produce coatings for tanks, battleships, bombers, ground vehicles, and more prosaic products, such as radios and furniture. It’s most certainly the sort of place that has toxicity.Apparently plant employees got a lot of blood tests while working there (and that's in the days before poisoning workers was a real public policy concern). While the lot can be cleaned up if it's done properly, it's been going on in a way that appears to both be haphazard and worrying neighbors.
· CurbedWire: Williamsburg 'Toxic Lot' Anxiety Rising [Curbed]
· Toxic Bedford Ave. Site in Curious State as Work Continues [GL]