Concrete facade falls from Center City building

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May 2, 2014 1:34:22 PM PDT
A heavy 25-foot piece of concrete facade came crashing down onto a Center City sidewalk early Friday morning.

It was just before 1:30 a.m. Friday that the decorative concrete column came crashing to the ground near 19th Street and JFK Boulevard.

The column was part of a decorative fa?ade along the parking garage portion of the Kennedy Building.

The 800,000 square foot structure holds up to 400 cars and more than 550 co-op apartments.

The building's general manager, Jim Giblin, joined architectural engineers and a masonry company Friday morning as they worked to assess and repair the damage.

Giblin said they believe excessive moisture over the winter and this spring accelerated the rusting of metal pieces that connected the column to the building.

L and I officials told Action News they issued two violations Friday: one for an unsafe fa?ade, and a second requiring a structural engineer to submit a report certifying that the remaining facades are safe.

The city confirmed that the building passed the fa?ade ordinance two years ago. A re-certification is required every five years.

Giblin said they regularly monitor the facades, and since this is a co-op, residents also pay for outside maintenance.

He said they are putting up webbing to make sure additional debris doesn't fall on the sidewalk.

The inspection process is expected to take several days to complete.


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