There are hundreds of miles of sidewalk sheds in New York City, and they’re largely unloved because they block out light, clog sidewalks, and attract trash and some sketchy human activity. It turns out they also have their limits when it comes to their stated mission of protecting people on the street from falling debris.
This was brought home over the weekend at the construction site of a luxury condominium in Park Slope, Brooklyn. When high winds raced through the neighborhood on Sunday afternoon, a rooftop scaffold on the Parlour Condominium construction site collapsed. Falling metal and wood missed the shed covering the Fourth Avenue sidewalk and instead crashed through a glass atrium over the patio of the popular bar Mission Dolores next door. Three people were injured, and one of them was rushed to a hospital with serious head injuries, CBS2 reports.
Several people who live in the neighborhood said they heard the scaffolding crash. Some thought it was a truck crashing on the street below. “I thought it was an earthquake,” says So Lee, who lives near the corner of Fourth Avenue and Carroll Street.
Sales on the Parlour Condominiums just started in spring, but the building has not been without problems since construction began. The Department of Buildings (DOB) website says the general contractor for the property has received a dozen construction safety violations this year – five in the month of June, including workers operating without the proper license. The DOB issued four violations to the contractor for not properly safeguarding the construction site and because the scaffolding wasn’t up to code.
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