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Demolition Noise At Old Maryville Site Will Get Worse Before It Gets Better

By Josh McGhee | January 13, 2017 9:11am
 Demolition at Montrose and Clarendon avenues began in December.
Demolition at Montrose and Clarendon avenues began in December.
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DNAinfo/Josh McGhee

UPTOWN — For the last two weeks, Kay Kirkpatrick has felt the vibrations from the Maryville Academy demolition throughout her workday.

She works from home and can see the wrecking balls soar into the structure on the west side of Clarendon and Montrose Avenues from her window.

The work begins around 8 a.m. and continues until 4:30 p.m., she said.

"I think it's really the vibrations more than the sound," said Kirkpatrick, who's lived in Uptown for 20 years.

Construction crews are demolishing the interior — and in the coming weeks they'll move on to demolish the exterior — of the former Cuneo Hospital and Maryville Academy site to make room for 811 Uptown, a 373-unit high-rise building with 275 parking spaces and first-floor retail, according to a press release from Lendlease, the construction manager of the building.

While the current work hasn't forced Kirkpatrick from her home on Agatite Avenue, she often has to move to a local coffee shop for some peace and quiet, she said.

"I'm working with it the best I can," said Kirkpatrick.

At a community meeting Thursday at Clarendon Park field house where residents were invited to discuss demolition and construction with Harlem Irving Companies' director of design and construction, Jim Snyder, and Ald. James Cappleman (46th), Kirkpatrick testified that her entire building vibrates from the construction.

Cappleman advised her to contact the 46th Ward Office or police if construction begins too early or continues too late, but also said "we can't stop a project because it's loud."

The demolition on the west building officially began after Christmas and should be complete around the first week of February. After the west building is down, crews will begin demolition of the east building, said Snyder, who's spent more than 16 years in construction management.

The east building, which will become a retail space, is a single-story structure, he said.

As the demolition gets closer to the ground, the vibrations will subside. The east building's demolition will be "relatively" quieter, he said.

But Snyder also warned residents crews would begin using a pile driver in February.

"It's loud, and it will be loud for about a month," he warned. "The vibrations you get from pile-driving, you will notice it."

Residents living on the top floors of their buildings will feel it more than the lower levels, he said.

In April, sidewalks near the site will have to be closed, and flag men will help direct traffic. The closures will last about a year.

Toward the end of April, Clarendon Avenue will need to be shut down for a weekend for a tower crane to be brought in, he said.

Construction shouldn't affect traffic on Montrose Avenue, he said.

Residents will begin moving into the lower levels of the building in the summer of 2018 while crews complete construction. Treasure Island Foods, which will fill the retail space in the east building, should open during the summer as well, he said.

After the meeting, Kirkpatrick said she was now more worried about the pile-driving. While her building has "solid construction," it's more than 100 years old, she said.

"That's going to be worse. I'm a little worried about stress damage to the walls," said Kirkpatrick. "I'm not worrying about it falling down, but I will go back and take pictures."

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