The building that collapsed yesterday on the 2100 block of Market Street, killing six and injuring fourteen, is no longer the site of an active search and rescue mission, according to Philly.com. The collapse is a tragic reminder that the city and its citizens need to pay close attention to construction and demolition work, even if it appears routine. Vacancy and neglect of buildings is a serious issue here.
· Everyone involved in the demolition of the building had a shady history: the architect had ties to an infamous Old City slumlord, the owner of the building, Richard Basciano, had already been written up by Inga Saffron in the Inky for the state of neglect of his mini-empire on Market Street, and the owner of the contracting company, Griffin Campbell Construction, has a criminal record. [Paywall code: R71V]
· Griffin Gampbell Construction, the contracting company demolishing 2136 Market, currently has permits from Licenses & Inspections to demolish six other buildings on Market Street, three of which are owned by STB Investments Corp, the owner of 2136 Market Street.
· Nearby construction workers and architects report unsafe demolition practices at the scene, including demolition without support of exterior walls, using heavy machinery to knock down walls adjacent to the Salvation Army store next door, and working without "cross support."