Missed asbestos, dangerous dust: How Philadelphia’s Ben Franklin H.S. project went wrong

by Wendy Ruderman and Kristen A. Graham, Updated: October 18, 2019

The Philadelphia Inquirer

A few weeks into the school year, Benjamin Franklin High and Science Leadership Academy parents received an urgent note: Damaged asbestos had been discovered inside ducts in the boiler room and first-floor SLA commons. The Philadelphia School District shut the building to students on Oct. 1, and Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. said he was surprised the $37 million project had run into asbestos problems.

“We were caught off guard,” Hite said.

It shouldn’t have been a surprise.

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