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Mount Manresa Project Hit With Second Stop Work Order

By Nicholas Rizzi | October 17, 2014 2:59pm
 Work crews received a second partial stop work order at the controversial Mount Manresa site.
Work crews received a second partial stop work order at the controversial Mount Manresa site.
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Barbara Sanchez

FORT WADSWORTH — The demolition of Staten Island's Mount Manresa was snagged by yet another stop work order this week.

Crews demolishing the former Jesuit retreat house were told they can only work on asbestos abatement after residents filed complaints with the city that work continued despite an earlier stop order, according to the Department of Buildings.

"According to the community, which is closely monitoring the site day and night, work continues to take place," Borough President James Oddo wrote in a letter sent to the DOB this week.

"If this is the case, the owners of the property are potentially putting their neighbors at risk of significant asbestos exposure."

This year, the controversial sale of the historic site to developers the Savo Brothers was finalized and demolition began.

However, after asbestos was found in some buildings, the DOB issued a partial stop work order on the project that only allowed crews to preform asbestos abatement and site cleaning, according to DOB records.

On Wednesday, the project was slapped with another partial stop work order that takes away crews' ability to clear the site.

"We're glad that they're not clearing the ground because that was a major concern with the dust that's being stirred," said Barbara Sanchez of the Committee to Save Mount Manresa.

"We still want a full stop work order."

This month, crews for the project were fined $67,000 after they told the city there were no traces of asbestos in the buildings. City inspectors later found the potentially deadly material.

The asbestos inspector, Gaspare Santoro, was hit with 27 infractions by the city including failure to address all asbestos material at the site.

He could face fines of $37,200 and the loss of his license, the DOB said.